Uganda Prisons spokesperson Frank Baine has explained why they blocked Dr Kizza Besigye’s Ramadhan message to the public.
Besigye told Nakawa Chief Magistrates Court on Wednesday that his rights were being trampled upon after he was denied a chance to send out Ramadhan wishes to the Muslim Community.
Baine says a prison is an institution with rules and regulations that govern it.
“Dr Kizza Besigye’s Ramadan letter was intended for the press. Under Prisons Act, that is unacceptable,” he said while appearing on NBS television Thursday morning.
He said if the officer in charge allowed Dr Kizza Besigye to send out messages for the press, he would be reprimanded.
“A prisoner can’t be visited by more than three people at a go but we have allowed Dr Kizza Besigye to be visited by more than 10 people.”
On Besigye being transported in a ‘cage’, Baine asked the public to leave that to the professionals.
“This is not the first time we are with Dr Besigye. This is not the first time we are holding a high profile inmate. The other day, we had a former vice president.”
Baine said Besigye is a capital offender in a maximum facility.
“We can’t make prison seem like home. We are trying everything to make Besigye’s stay bearable but we can’t make prison seem like a home. He is not the only inmate we are holding. We currently hold over 40,000 prisoners.”
According to Baine, Besigye wasn’t allowed access to newspapers but that has since changed.
“We keep making revisions. There is no one who will poison Dr Besigye. Without prisoners, I have no job. We have a job to do and we are doing it.”