In cabinet meeting of Friday 3rd 2017, HE Paul Kagame announced liberation of inmates children who succeeded national examinations. These 16 children passed examinations while detained in Nyagatare prison.
Taking this decision, President Kagame exercised the power he has, in accordance with the Constitution of Rwanda, article 109, concerning Prerogative of mercy. “The President of the Republic has the authority to exercise the prerogative of mercy in accordance with the procedures provided for by law and after consultation with the Supreme Court”.
The Rwanda Correctional Services has immediately put in practice the decision. Saturday February 4th, a letter no 198/CG/RCS/IM/2017 was addressed to the Director of Nyagatare prison. In this letter, the General Commissioner of Prisons, George Rwigamba recommends execution of the measure.
The letter says “Reference to letter no 14/MO/Conf./2017 of February 3rd, from Minister of Justice, regarding presidential mercy over children performing well national examinations 2016, the Minister recommends immediate transfer of letters of children in question towards their respective prisons”.In addition, the Minister of Justice recommends immediate liberation of those children to go on studies freely.
Talking to Igihe.com, CIP Hillary Sengabo, spokesman of RCS vows liberation of those kids, as soon as letters reach RCS. He added all 16 candidates succeeded well: 11 in Primary and 5 in secondary (O’ Level).
The Nyagatare prison takes care of children under 18 years whose criminal cases have been sentenced by courts. For the time being, 167 children are there, only 12 are girls. Last year, another presidential mercy was given to 62 girls under 16 years who were accused of abortion.
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Jean Baptiste Karegeya
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