All visits to prisons have been suspended henceforth by the Commissioner General of Prisons, Dr. Johnson Byabashaija with an aim to curb the spread of Covid-19.
The communication was made through a notice addressed to all heads of department, regional prisons commanders, heads of sections and it had urgency of immediate implementation of the directive.
In the said notice, a side from the fact that prisons are off limits to all visitors, it also informs that there ought to be a restriction in the movement of staff as well as the visits they get from community members to the staff quarters.
These instructions have been shaped by the current situation in Uganda as well as her neighboring countries which have been hit by the second wave of the deadly coronavirus variant.
Basing on this situation, the Commissioner General of Prisons therefore urged all heads department to pay kin attention to the provisions of the notice so as to cut down on the chances of inmates contracting the virus.
New prisoners shall still be admitted into the prisons but to the current new reception centers and subsequently, they will be re-integrated after a mandatory fourteen days of quarantined in the new reception areas.
“Standby Class 1 is sustained until further notice. Admission of new prisoners will continue at the current new reception centres and new prisoners will be re-integrated after 14 days of mandatory quarantine,” read the notice in part.
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As for the court procedures, they’ll continue just as earlier scheduled and prisoners shall only appear in the court room on two days of the week which in clude Tuesdays and Thursdays. While back at the barracks, staff members must always wear masks and wash hands as often as possible.
“Re-activate regional and facility specific task force meetings to review progress. All staff must be engaged to make full participation in instituting preventive measures and reporting suspected cases in and around the barracks,” he additionally said.
This follows the presidential address in which all schools were shutdown as well as places of worship as triggered by the resurgence of the Covid-19 that has lead to an increase in the number of people suffering from Covid-19.