Inmates at Mukobeko Maximum Security Correctional Facility have condemned opposition leaders and the Foundation for Democratic Process -FODEP- for urging President Edgar Lungu not to pardon them this year.
Some opposition political parties and FODEP Executive Director George Chimembe have challenged the President’s prerogative saying they are against the pardoning of inmates because 2021 is an election year.
One of the inmates, Saidi Banda, says the law empowers the Head of State to exercise clemency on convicted persons following wide consultations.
Mr. Banda says the President’s action is always in accordance with Article 97 of the Republican Constitution, which provides for Presidential pardon and substitution of severe punishments imposed on convicted persons.
Another inmate, Chansa Chitika says President Lungu has shown care for inmates as he always exercises his prerogative of mercy on days such as Independence and Africa Freedom Day.
Mr. Chitika says President Lungu cares for inmates because he is the first Head of State to allow them to vote following a Constitutional Court judgement that stated that they must be allowed to vote.
President Lungu pardoned 5-hundred and 79 inmates to commemorate the 2021 Africa Freedom Day.
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