Uganda Prisons Commissioner General Dr. Johnson Byabashaija

Uganda has the second most overcrowded prison system of any country in Africa just behind Zambia, with its institutions operating at 293.2 percent capacity, according to data by the World Prison Brief.

Such a severe level of overcrowding, the Brief says, can result in malnutrition and the spread of disease in prisons where over 50 men are crammed into a cell at a time, many of whom have not even been convicted of a crime.

Worldwide, Uganda is the sixth in the top ten behind Haiti, Philippines, El Salvador, Zambia and Guatemala which have operating capacity of 454.4 per cent, 436.0 per cent, 348.2 per cent, 303.0 per cent and 296.2 per cent respectively.

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According to the Brief, Uganda has prison population rate of 129 per 100,000 of national population 41.99 million at October 2017. Prison population total, including pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners was 54, 059.

The Brief shows that female prisoners as percentage of prison population made 4.4 per cent by end of December 2014 whereas foreign prisoners comprises of 0.5 per cent. The number of established institutions was 249 by 2016.

Other African countries with high concentration of prisoners in rooms are Sudan, Comoros, Benin, Burundi and Chad.

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