Political prisoners in Kitalya Maximum Prison fed on half baked food – MPs
The food the prison feed the prisoners on is of poor quality and often half cooked before they serve it to them, which could be making the prisoners sick.
Legislators on the Human Rights Committee have issued out a call to the government for the unconditional release of the political prisoners at Kitalya Maximum Prison.
During a visit to the Maximum prison in Kitalya, legislators led by the Committee Vice Chairperson Agnes Taaka were received by David Nsalasata, on behalf of the Commissioner-General.
According to Taaka, the Human Rights Committee members were able to speak to one of the political prisoners’ representative Nubian Buken Ali who is a close ally of the National Unity Platform principal Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu.
Taaka said, “Nubian Ali told us the conditions they are going through and he also told us about how they have been denied a right to bail,”
“We inspected the sickbay, where we found three NUP supporters who claimed that they have not yet healed from the pain inflicted upon them during their arrest in Kalangala last year,” Taaka said.
About wounded prisoners, Kawempe North legislator Latif Ssebagala noted that some of the prisoners they met need to get private medical attention immediately so that in case something bad happens to them, the prison is not to blame.
“We met some who are not in a good health condition, they told us that most of their colleagues are coughing which means that congestion is a lot. The treatment here cannot be enough, they should be allowed to get private treatment,” Latif said.
Ssebagala as well added that the food the prison feed the prisoners is of poor quality and often half cooked before they serve it to them, which could be making the prisoners sick.
However, in defence of the prison’s condition, the Dırector Production and Engineering at the Uganda Prisons Nsalasata who spoke on behalf of the Prisons boss cited that they are trying their best to feed the prisoners on the budget they have.
“We can surely do better and we have taken note of the observations you’ve made and maybe we need to change a few things,” Nsalasata said.
He added that they will work on the recommendations of the committee but he denied claims that most of the detainees were sick and in pain, saying that for most of them, it is just Malaria.
The Human Rights Committee Vice Chairperson Agnes Taaka now calls upon the government to release all political prisoners unconditionally to enable them to get access to better health care.
“Most of these people were arrested because of politics, politics is now done. We are going to go back and make a report very quickly so that some of these people can be released. Some of them were even arrested for petty petty reasons,” Taaka said.
Kitalya Prisons came under scrutiny after most of the opposition supporters who were arrested in recent elections were detained there. Since then, there have been claims that many of them have been tortured while in detention and fed on half-cooked food.