The Human Rights Commission is saddened by the death of an inmate it had recommended for pardoning on account of ill-health and old age, a day before the announcement of his pardoning.
In a statement issued Commission spokesperson, Mweelwa Muleya who has not named the deceased says it sympathizes with his family on the tragic loss.
Meanwhile, Mr.Muleya has hailed President Edgar Lungu for pardoning 283 inmates from the various correctional facilities across the country on the eve of Zambia’s 55th independence anniversary celebrations.
“The pardoning of inmates was also necessary towards decongesting Correctional Facilities which were usually overcrowded between 250 percent and 300 percent, a situation that contributed to the violation of a wide range of human rights violations. It was a momentous occasion for the pardoned individuals to join and their families and the rest of Zambians in celebrating Zambia’s 55th Independence Anniversary Celebrations under the theme “Our Freedoms, Our Country and Our Responsibility,” Mr.Muleya says.
“The Commission is commending the President’s exercise of mercy against the background of the unfavourable human rights situation in detention and correctional facilities which the Commission has consistently been bringing to the attention of the various legal and justice sector players in Zambia.”
Mr Muleya has since congratulated all those who were pardoned and appeal to them not to betray the President’s Prerogative of Mercy by backsliding into old behaviour that had caused them to be in conflict with the law and society at large.