The payment scale by the Uganda Prisons service which initially offered Shs 500 per work done for a skilled prisoner, Shs 250 for the semi-skilled and Shs 100 for the unskilled individuals has been revised to increase the earnings of the prisoners.
This was revealed by the Uganda Prisons Service Spokesperson Frank Baine while addressing the press at the Media Centre today, stating that the Minister of Internal Affairs Jeje Odong has signed a new statutory instrument called the Prisoners Amendment regulations 2020 in relation to the prisoners earning scheme.
“As we all know, previously, prisoners were earning 500 shillings per work day for a skilled employee, Shs 250 for the semi-skilled and Shs 100 for the unskilled. As per the new scheme, with immediate effect, skilled prisoners will start earning Shs 1398, Shs 699 for the semi- skilled and unskilled will be earning Shs 280 per work done,” Baine explained.
“Most people have been asking us about the under pay of prisoners, now you all know that it is the government that determines the prisoners pay scheme in accordance to the law,” he added.
It should be noted that in 2019, members of the Human Rights Committee of Parliament asked the government to review the amount of money paid to prisoners for their labour.
The MPs argued that considering that even while in jail, some prisoners continue to support their families, the rates need to be revised upwards to enable them to earn decently.
Meanwhile, addressing the pending Prisons recruitment programme, Baine noted that due to unavoidable circumstances, the recruitment exercise of warders and wardresses has been postponed.
“The recruitment was supposed to start on 16th to 21st November but we shall later communicate the new date in which it shall be conducted,” he said.
He further cautioned the public to observe the standard operating procedures due to the increase in the number of Covid-19 cases.
“Continue washing hands at all times and observe the SOPs as directed the Ministry of Health,” Baine cautioned.