Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
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THE PRISONS ACT, 2006.
ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS.
1. Short title.
PART II—ESTABLISHMENT, FUNCTIONS
3. Composition of the Prisons Service.
4. Objective of the Service.
5. Functions of the Service.
6. Financing of the Service.
7. Powers of the Commissioner General.
8. Welfare of staff and prisoners
9. Establishment of Prisons Authority.
10. Functions of the Prisons Authority.
11. Powers of the Prisons Authority.
12. Power of the Prisons Authority to make Rules.
13. Establishment of the Prisons Council.
14. Functions of the Prisons Council.
15. Meetings of the Prisons Council.
16. Regional Prisons Committees, their composition and functions.
17. District Prisons Committees, their composition and functions.
PART III—APPOINTMENTS, PROMOTIONS, RECRUITMENT,
RETIREMENT AND TERMINATION OF APPOINTMENTS.
18. Appointment of Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner.
19. Vacation of Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner’s Office.
20. Appointment of prisons officers.
22. Resignation by prisons officers.
23. Conditions on termination of service.
24. Service on contract.
25. Employment of civilians in the Service.
6. Appointment, powers and duties of medical officer.
PART IV—ESTABLISHMENT OF PRISONS.
27. Declaration of Prisons.
28. Temporary prisons.
29. Segregation of male and female prisoners.
30. Officers in charge.
31. Administrative divisions.
32. Regional Prisons Commander.
33. Functions of Regional Prisons Commander.
34. District Prisons Commander.
5. Security measures.
PART V—GENERAL POWERS, DUTIES AND PRIVILEGES
OF PRISON OFFICERS.
36. General powers and duties of prison officers.
37. Prison officers to exercise police powers.
38. Prison officers to be assigned to any part of Uganda.
39. Powers of search.
40. Use of force or weapons by prison officers.
41. Senior officers to check unlawful use of force or firearms.
42. Circumstances under which a prison officer may use a firearm.
43. Immunity of prison officers.
4. Power to take photographs and fingerprints of prisoners.
PART VI—OFFENCES BY PRISON OFFICERS.
48. Inciting prison officers to desert.
49. Assault by prison officers on another officer in rank.
50. Other offences.
1. Prison officers not to engage in dealings with prisoners.
PART VII—DISCIPLINE OF PRISON OFFICERS.
52. Power of disciplinary control.
53. Recommendation for dismissal of prison officers.
54. Arrest for disciplinary offence.
55. Place of confinement of offenders.
56. Criminal proceedings take precedence over disciplinary proceedings.
PART VIII—ADMISSION, TREATMENT, CONTROL AND
DISCHARGE OF PRISONERS.
57. Rights of prisoners.
58. Admission of prisoners into prison.
59. Admission of female prisoners with infants.
60. Custody of female prisoners.
61. Particulars of prisoners to be recorded.
62. Search of prisoners on admission to custody.
63. Prisoners to be in custody of the officer in charge.
64. Custody of unconvicted prisoners.
65. Certain prisoners to be treated as unconvicted prisoners.
66. Release on bail.
67. Prisoners required as witnesses.
68. Prisoners to be subject to prison discipline.
69. Prisoners entitled to food.
70. Prisoner to have exercise
71. Prisoners to make complaints to prison authorities.
73. Removal of prisoners to other prisons.
74. Treatment of prisoners who are insane or mentally abnormal.
75. Removal of sick prisoners to hospital.
76. Measures for security of prisoners in hospital.
77. Right to information.
78. Contact with outside world.
79. Re-arrest of prisoner released erroneously.
80. Imprisonment in lieu of default of payment of fine.
81. Restraint of a prisoner in a separate cell.
82. Foreign prisoners.
83. Release of prisoners on full remission.
84. Remission of part of sentence of certain prisoners.
85. Loss of remission.
86. Grounds for grant of further remission by the President.
87. Habitual criminals to be released on licence only.
88. Review of sentences.
89. Release on parole.
90. Social relations and after care.
PART IX—OFFENCES RELATING TO PRISONS AND PRISONERS.
91. Punishment in different prisons.
92. Forfeiture of remission as punishment.
93. Prescription of prison offences by the Minister.
94. Punishment by confinement.
95. Prisoners may be charged before court for offences against discipline.
96. Prisoners right to defence.
97. Restriction on prisoner punishing
98. Registration of punishments.
99. Punishment imposed on prisoner to be effected.
100. Offence in relation to prisoner trafficking.
101. Prohibited articles.
102. Seizure of prohibited articles.
104. Unlawful possession of prison articles.
105. Incitement to mutiny or disobedience.
106. Harbouring prisoners.
107. General penalty.
08. Power to prosecute under other laws not affected.
PART X—VISITING JUSTICES, OFFICIAL VISITORS AND
MINISTERS OF RELIGION.
109. Inspection of prisons by visiting justices.
110. Functions of visiting justices.
111. Powers of Cabinet Ministers and Judges.
112. Inspection by other bodies or groups.
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13. Appointment of religious ministers or priests to be prison ministers.
114. Prisons Contracts Committee.
115. Prisons Welfare Fund.
116. Transfer of Local Administration prisons.
117. Lock-ups not classified as prisons.
118. List of prisoners awaiting trial.
119. Reward for apprehension of escaped prisoner.
120. Rewards of gratuities for prison officers.
121. Detention of prisoners sentenced abroad.
122. Transfer of prisoners to other countries.
123. Delegation of powers.
125. Repeal of Cap. 304 and savings
FIRST SCHEDULE—CURRENCY POINT
SECOND SCHEDULE—DISCIPLINARY OFFENCES.
THE PRISONS ACT, 2006.
An Act to repeal and replace the Prisons Act, Cap. 304 in order to bring it in line with the Constitution, to establish the Prisons Authority and the Prisons Council; to bring Local Administration Prisons under the Uganda Prisons Service; to bring the Act in line with effective and humane modern penal policy and universally accepted international standards; and to provide for other matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing.
DATE OF ASSENT: 24th May, 2006.
Date of Commencement: 14th July, 2006.
BE IT ENACTED by Parliament as follows:
1. Short title
This Act may be cited as the Prisons Act, 2006.
In this Act, unless the context requires—
“aggravated prison offence” means an offence declared to be such by rules made under this Act;
“appellant prisoner” means a convicted prisoner who is detained in a prison as a result of a conviction which is the subject matter of an appeal, notice of which has been accepted but the decision in regard to which has not been given but does not mean a convicted prisoner who has made an election under the provisions of section 40(5) of the Criminal Procedure Code Act;
“civil prisoner” means an indebted person entitled to special treatment;
“Commissioner General” means the Commissioner General of Prisons;
“convicted prisoner” means a prisoner under a sentence of a court or court-martial;
“court” means any court or authority entitled to pass a sentence in a criminal case or to order a person to be detained in custody in any case;
“currency point” represents the amount in Uganda Shillings prescribed in the First Schedule to this Act;
“Deputy Commissioner General” means the Deputy Commissioner General of Prisons;
“judge” means a judge of the High Court or higher court;
“junior prison officer” means a prison officer of a class declared by the Minister to be a junior prison officer;
“justice of peace” means a justice of the peace appointed under the Justices of the Peace Act;
“lock-up” means any place or building, maintained by the administration of a district or a police force, where arrested persons are temporarily detained, pending production in court;
“magistrate” means a magistrate presiding over a court;
“medical officer” means either the district director of health or a medical officer in the district or area in which the prison is situated or, in his or her absence, any registered or licensed Government medical practitioner or the medical officer appointed to a prison if a medical officer has not been appointed;
“Minister” means the minister responsible for internal affairs and includes the Minister of State;
“minor prison offence” means an offence committed by a prisoner and declared to be such by rules made under this Act;
“officer in charge” means a prison officer appointed by the Commissioner General to be in charge of a prison;
“prison” means a prison established under this Act;
“prison officer” means member of the Prisons Service of whatever rank;
“prisoner” means a person duly committed to custody under the writ, warrant or order of a court exercising criminal jurisdiction or by order of a court-martial;
“prohibited article” means an article the introduction or removal of which into or out of a prison is prohibited by this Act or by any rules made under this Act;
“senior prison officer” means a prison officer of a class declared by the Minister to be a senior prison officer;
“Service” means the Uganda Prisons Service.
PART II—ESTABLISHMENT, FUNCTIONS
3. Composition of the Prisons Service
The Uganda Prisons Service established by article 215 of the Constitution shall consist of—
(a) the Commissioner General and the Deputy Commissioner General;
(b) Regional Prisons Commanders, District Prisons Commanders, officers in charge of prisons;
(d) Heads of Departments at Prisons Headquarters;
(e) any other person appointed as a member of the Prisons Service under this Act.
4. Objective of the Prisons Service
(1) The main objective of the Service is to contribute to the protection of all members of society by providing reasonable, safe, secure and humane custody and rehabilitation of offenders in accordance with universally accepted standards.
(2) To achieve its objective, the Service shall—
(a) professionalise and develop the staff;
(b) ensure a meaningful and adequate remuneration to its staff;
(c) ensure proper living conditions for staff and the prisoners.
5. Functions of the Service
The functions of the Service shall be—
(a) to ensure that every person detained legally in a prison is kept in humane, safe custody, produced in court when required until lawfully discharged or removed from prison;
(b) to facilitate the social rehabilitation and reformation of prisoners through specific training and educational programmes;
(c) to facilitate the re-integration of prisoners into their communities;
(d) to ensure performance by prisoners of work reasonably necessary for the effective management of prisons;
(e) to perform such other functions as the Minister, after consultation with the Prisons Authority, may from time to time assign to the Service. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
6. Financing of the Service
(1) The management, administration and activities of the Service shall be funded from the Consolidated Fund or any other sources that may be accessed or generated by the Service subject to the provisions of the Public Finance and Accountability Act.
(2) The Service shall engage in activities that are vital in securing adequate funding, generation of income from its assets, empowerment of staff and any other activities that shall promote good governance, peace, security and stability within the prevailing laws and regulations.
7. Powers of the Commissioner General
(1) The Commissioner General shall, in addition to such other powers, duties and functions as may be conferred upon or assigned to him or her by or under this Act, be responsible for the efficient supervision, administration and control of the Service.
(2) The Commissioner General, in consultation with the Prisons Authority, may issue such rules, standing orders, administrative instructions as he or she may consider expedient for the efficient supervision, administration and control of the Service and for observance by prisoners and prison officers.
(3) The Commissioner General may, in the exercise of his or her duties, transfer any prison officer to any station or office in the Service from the station or office held by that officer other than the post held by such officer and may transfer any officer to any part of the country at the exigencies of the Service. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(4) Whenever it is necessary for the safe custody or transportation of any prisoner or any emergencies or any other purpose, the Commissioner General, may appoint such number of suitable persons as he or she may deem expedient to serve as temporary warders or wardresses on such terms and conditions as may be rescribed.
(5) Whenever the need arises, the Commissioner General may, in consultation with the Public Service Commission, create more sections or offices in the Service. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(6) In the exercise of his or her powers and the performance of his or her duties and functions under this Act, the Commissioner General shall be accountable to and act in consultation with the Minister.
(7) The Commissioner General may delegate any of his or her functions under this Act—
(a) to the Deputy Commissioner General;
(b) to a Senior Prison Officer.
8. Welfare of staff and prisoners
The Service shall be provided with adequate resources and facilities to cater for the staff and the prisoners.
9. Establishment of Prisons Authority
(1) There is established a Prisons Authority.
(2) The Prisons Authority shall consist of—
(a) the Minister responsible for internal affairs as its chairperson;
(b) the following members—
(i) the Attorney General or his or her representative;
(ii) the Commissioner General;
(iii) the Deputy Commissioner General;
(iv) Permanent Secretary, Ministry responsible for public service;
(v) a senior officer-in-charge of personnel at the headquarters of the Service;
(vi) two other persons appointed by the President.
(3) The two persons appointed by the President in subsection (2)(b) (vi) shall serve for two years and their term may be renewed.
(4) The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry responsible for Internal Affairs shall be the Secretary to the Prisons Authority.
(5) The quorum of the Prisons Authority shall be five.
(6) The Prisons Authority may regulate its own procedure.
(7) The Prisons Authority shall meet at least once every four months at such times and places as the Chairperson of the Authority may determine. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(8) If the Chairperson is absent from or for any other reason unable to preside at any meeting of the Prisons Authority, the members present shall elect one from among their number to act as chairperson at that meeting.
(9) The decision of the majority of the members of the Prisons Authority present at a meeting shall constitute a decision of the Authority and, in the event of an equality of votes relating to any matter the member presiding at the meeting shall have a casting vote.
(10) The Prisons Authority shall cause a record to be kept of the proceedings at its meetings.
10. Functions of the Prisons Authority
(1) Subject to the Constitution and to this Act, the functions of the Prisons Authority are—
(a) to advise the Government on policy matters relating to the management, development and administration of the Service;
(b) to advise the President on the appointment of the Commissioner General and the Deputy Commissioner General;
(c) to make appointments and promotions of prison officers of and above the rank of Assistant Superintendent of Prisons but below the rank of Deputy Commissioner General;
(d) to make programmes for social rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders so as to enhance their ability to resettle in their communities;
(e) to develop and administer services and programs for the purpose of counselling persons subject to non-custodial sentences;
(f) to develop and administer services and programs designed to encourage prisoners, and persons referred to in paragraph (d) and to initiate, maintain and strengthen ties with members of their families and the community;
(g) to provide clear direction to all staff in their responsibilities; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(h) to provide strategic framework and plan for the development of the Service;
(i) to determine the terms and conditions of service in the Prisons Service;
(j) to hear and determine appeals from the decisions of the Prisons Council; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(k) to perform any other function that is connected to the above or that may be accorded to it by law.
(2) The Prisons Authority may appoint a committee from among its members to assist it in the performance of any of its functions and may assign to it such functions subject to such conditions and restrictions as the Authority may think fit.
11. Powers of the Prisons Authority
(1) The Prisons Authority may exercise such powers as are necessary or desirable to allow the proper discharge by it of its functions or any of them whether under this Act or any other law. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(2) Without limiting the generality of subsection (1), the Prisons Authority may—
(a) acquire property for the conduct of its operations;
(b) establish training facilities for prisoners and staff and provide courses and scholarships for officers;
(c) arrange for an exchange of officers between the Prisons Authority and the relevant authority in another country or State or territory that is responsible for the operation of the prisons service; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(d) engage persons to advise it in respect of matters of legal, financial or technical nature or that relate to the welfare of prisoners;
(e) enter into arrangements with any person or body for the purpose of any investigation, study or research that, in the Prisons Authority’s opinion, is necessary or desirable having regard to the functions of the Authority;
(f) engage a person other than a Commissioner General or, an officer of the Prisons Authority or a body of persons to conduct on behalf of the Prisons Authority any part of its operations; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(g) grant financial or other assistance to persons or bodies of persons concerned with the welfare of prisoners or persons subject to probation orders, community service orders or fine option orders or their families; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(h) encourage improvement in the standard and method of work performed by its officers and employees by such means as it deems appropriate including the establishment of awards for competence and innovation.
12. Power of the Prisons Authority to make Rules
(1) The Prisons Authority may make rules in respect of—
(a) the management, security and good order of prisons;
(b) the safe custody, welfare and privilege of prisoners;
(c) the duties, functions, powers, and conduct of its officers and employees;
(d) all matters that are required or permitted to be the subject of such rules under the provisions of this Act.
(2) The Prisons Authority may prescribe a code of conduct for prison officers and other employees.
(3) The Prisons Authority shall ensure that the rules made under this section are brought to the notice of prison officers and employees. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
13. Establishment of the Prisons Council
(1) There is established a Prisons Council.
(2) The Prisons Council shall consist of—
(a) the Commissioner General as its Chairperson;
(c) the Deputy Commissioner General who shall be Vice Chairperson;
(d) the officers at the prisons headquarters responsible for—
(i) prisoners’ administration;
(v) legal affairs;
(vi) research and planning;
(vii) welfare and rehabilitation;
(viii) Regional Prisons Commanders.
(d) The following members shall be appointed by the Commissioner General, in consultation with the officers-in-charge of prisons—
(i) an officer of the rank of Assistant Superintendent of Prisons;
(ii) an officer of the rank of Principal Officer; and
(iii) three non-commissioned officers; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(3) The officer responsible for administration in the Service shall be the Secretary.
(4) The members of the Council in subsection (2) (d) shall be appointed for a period of three years.
(5) The quorum for any meeting of the Council shall be ten members.
14. Functions of the Prisons Council
(1) Subject to the Constitution and to this Act, the functions of the Prisons Council are—
(a) to make appointments and promotions of prison officers up to the rank of a Principal Officer;
(b) to exercise disciplinary control over all prison officers of and below the rank of Principal Officer through the established procedure; Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(c) to advise the Prisons Authority on the rank structure in the Service;
(d) to formulate terms and conditions of service of staff of the Service subject to approval by the Prisons Authority;
(e) to formulate and establish standards of recruitment and training within the Service;
(f) to determine the types and quality of equipment and supplies to be procured by the Service;
(g) to formulate and advise the Prisons Authority on the policy of the Service and ensure the implementation of that policy;
(h) to ensure efficient organisation and administration of the Service; and to ensure that the Service is of a national character and composition. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(2) The Prisons Council may appoint a committee from among its members to assist it in the performance of its functions under this Act and may assign to it such functions subject to such conditions and restrictions as the Council may think fit.
15. Meetings of the Prisons Council
(1) The Prisons Council shall meet at least once every three months at such times and places as the Chairperson of that Council may determine.
(2) If the Chairperson is absent from or for any other reason unable to preside at any meeting of the Council, the Vice-Chairperson shall preside at the meeting. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
(3) The Chairperson or any other person who acts as chairperson shall determine the procedure of the meeting of the Prisons Council.
(4) The quorum for a meeting of the Prisons Council shall be ten.
(5) The decision of the majority of the members of the Prisons Council present at a meeting shall constitute a decision of the Council and in the event of an equality of votes relating to any matter the member presiding at the meeting shall have a casting vote. Uganda Prisons Service Act 2006 Pdf
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(6) The Prisons Council shall cause a record to be kept of the proceedings at its meetings.
16. Regional Prisons Committees, their composition and functions
(1) There shall be established a Regional Prisons Committee in each region.
(2) The functions of the Regional Prisons Committee are—
(a) to advise the Prisons Council on appointments, promotions, and other personnel matters; and
(b) any other duties assigned to it by the Prisons Council.
(3) A Regional Prisons Committee shall be composed of—
(a) the Regional Prisons Commander as its Chairperson; and
(b) the following members—
(i) the officers-in-charge of prisons in the region;
(ii) a staff officer of the Region who shall act as Secretary to the Regional Prisons Committee;
(iii) a Principal Officer from each prison in the region; and
(iv) one non-commissioned officer from each prison in the region appointed by the Regional Prisons Commander.
(4) The Regional Prisons Committee shall regulate its own procedure.
17. District Prisons Committees, their composition and functions
(1) There shall be established a District Prisons Committee in each district whose functions are—
(a) to advise the Regional Prisons Committee on appointments, promotion of staff and other personnel matters;
(b) any other matters assigned to it by the Regional Prisons Committee.
(2) The District Prisons Committees shall consist of the following—
(a) District Prisons Commander who shall be the Chairperson;
(b) the Deputy Prisons Commander who shall be the Deputy Chairperson;
(c) a staff officer who shall be the Secretary;
(d) a representative of Principal Officers;
(e) a representative of Non Commissioned Officers (NCOs);
(f) a representative of other ranks;
(g) an officer responsible for health, welfare, rehabilitation, farms, engineering and a representative of a recognised religion.
(3) The representatives specified in subsection (2) (f) and (g) shall be appointed by the Regional Prisons Commander.
PART III—APPOINTMENTS, PROMOTIONS, RECRUITMENT,
RETIREMENT AND TERMINATION OF APPOINTMENTS.
18. Appointment of Commissioner General and Deputy Commissioner General
The Commissioner General and Deputy Commissioner General shall be appointed by the President in accordance with article 216 of the Constitution.
19. Vacation of Commissioner General and Deputy Commissioner General’s Office
(1) The President may remove the Commissioner General and Deputy Commissioner General in accordance with article 216 of the Constitution.
(2) The President may, on the recommendation of the Prisons Authority, remove the Commissioner General and Deputy Commissioner General from office due to the following—
(a) continued ill health;
c) inability to efficiently carry out the functions of that office; or
(d) in the public interest.
(3) The Commissioner General or Deputy Commissioner General may, at his or her own request and with the approval of the President, vacate his or her office on grounds of ill health or for any other reason that the President may deem sufficient subject to such conditions as to retirement benefits as are applicable to a staff member of similar rank in the Public Service.
20. Appointment of prisons officers
(1) Subject to the Constitution and this Act, officers of and above the rank of Cadet Assistant Superintendent of Prisons shall be appointed by the Prisons Authority.
(2) The Prisons Council shall appoint officers below the rank of Assistant Superintendent of Prisons.
(1) Unless otherwise expressly provided in this Act, a prison officer—
(a) shall retire from his or her office on attaining the age of sixty years;
(b) may retire after twenty years of continuous service or after attaining the age of forty-five years and having served continuously for ten years.
(2) An appointing authority responsible for appointment of a prison officer may require the officer to retire—
(a) in the public interest;
(b) due to continued ill health;
(c) due to inefficiency; or
(d) for any other sufficient reason.
(3) An appointing authority responsible for appointing prison officers shall require the officer to retire on medical grounds if the officer is declared by a Prisons Medical Board or Prisons Medical officer to be unfit for further service in the Service due to medical, mental or physical incapacity.
(4) An officer affected by subsection (2) and subsection (3) shall have a right to be heard.
22. Resignation by prisons officers
Subject to section 21, a prison officer shall not terminate his or her service with the Service except with written permission of the appointing authority.
23. Conditions on termination of service
(1) A prison officer shall on the termination of his or her service with the Service—
(a) cease to exercise all powers and authority vested in him or her by virtue of his or her office and;
(b) before he or she is issued with a certificate of termination of service, have handed over to the officer in charge of a prison or office at the place at which he or she was last stationed, all arms, accoutrements, ammunition, uniform insignia and other equipment which had been issued to him or her by virtue of his or her employment with the Service.
(2) A prison officer who fails to comply with subsection (1) commits an offence, and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding thirty currency points or imprisonment not exceeding twelve months or to both.
24. Service on contract
(1) A prison officer who has reached retirement age may apply to the appointing authority to serve in the Service on contract for a continuous period not exceeding two years at a time, but in any case, the total number of years served on contract shall not exceed four.
(2) An application under subsection (1) shall be made—
(a) in the case of a prison officer of or above the rank of Assistant Superintendant of Prisons, to the Secretary to the Prisons Authority.
(b) in the case of a prison officer of or below the rank of Assistant Superintendant of Prisons, to the Prisons Council.
25. Employment of civilians in the Service
(1) The Public Service Commission in consultation with the Commissioner General may, employ civilians to perform such administrative functions as are normally outside the line of duties of a prisons officer, regulate the method of their employment, establish the terms and conditions of their employment, and provide for any other matters in relation to the employment of civilians as it appears to him or her to be reasonably necessary for the efficient administration of the Service.
(2) Notwithstanding the generality of subsection (1) a civilian may be employed in the Service on temporary, permanent or on contract terms.
(3) The Commissioner General may in consultation with the Prisons Authority, by statutory instrument make rules and regulations governing the terms and conditions of service of civilians employed in the Service.
26. Appointment, powers and duties of medical officer
(1) The Prisons Authority may, in consultation with the Health Service Commission, appoint a Director of Health Services, who will be responsible for direction and control of all health services in the entire Service.
(2) The Prisons Authority may, in consultation with the Health Service Commission, appoint qualified medical officers at every prison in the country who shall be responsible for all health care of all prisoners and staff in the prison for which he or she has been appointed.
(3) The functions and powers of the medical officer shall be prescribed by rules.
PART IV—ESTABLISHMENT OF PRISONS.
27. Declaration of Prisons
(1) The Minister may, by statutory instrument, declare any building, enclosure or place or any part of it to be a prison for the purposes of this Act; and may in like manner, declare that any prison shall cease to be a prison for the purposes of this Act.
(2) A prison shall include the grounds and buildings within the prison enclosure and also any other grounds or buildings belonging to or attached to it and used by prisoners or the staff of the prison.
(3) Any building declared to be a prison shall meet minimum health standards.
(4) A writ, warrant or other legal instrument, in which it may be necessary to describe a particular prison, any description designating a prison by reference to the name of the place or town where it is situated, or other definite description, shall be valid and sufficient for all purposes.
28. Temporary prisons
(a) Whenever it appears to the Commissioner General that the number of prisoners in a prison is greater than can be conveniently kept there and it is not convenient to transfer the excess number to some other prison; or
(b) owing to the outbreak of epidemic disease within a prison or for any other reason, it is desirable to provide for temporary shelter or safe custody of any prisoners,
the Commissioner General may, with the approval of the Minister direct for the shelter and safe custody in temporary prisons of the excess number of prisoners that can not be conveniently or safely kept in the prison, and every such temporary prison shall be a prison for the purposes of this Act.
29. Segregation of male and female prisoners
Except for the purpose of work or training, and only under strict supervision, male and female prisoners shall be kept apart and confined in separate prisons or separate parts of the same prison in such a manner as to prevent contact or communication between the sexes.
30. Officers in charge
(1) The Commissioner General shall, in respect of every prison appoint a prisons officer as the officer in charge.
(2) The officer in charge of a prison shall, subject to the provisions of this Act—
(a) be charged with the arms, accoutrements, ammunition, clothing and all other public stores and foodstuffs issued and delivered for the use of the prison and prison officers under his or her control, and with all public money for which he or she may be held accountable, all valuables, money, articles of clothing and other property entrusted to his or her keeping as being the property of prisoners, and shall account for the same in case of their being lost or damaged, otherwise than by unavoidable accident, theft, robbery or actual service;
(b) direct, supervise and control all administrative matters relating to the prison in question;
(c) issue directives or instructions to prison officers and prisoners, and ensure compliance with the directives and instructions;
(d) keep records in respect of the prison as may be required by the Commissioner General; and
(e) perform such other duties or functions as the Commissioner General may assign to him or her under this Act.
(3) The officer in charge shall be responsible to the Commissioner General through the Regional Prisons Commander and the Deputy Commissioner General in the performance of his or her functions under this Act and the conduct of the prison officers and treatment of prisoners in his or her charge.
(4) Where the Commissioner General has not appointed an officer in charge in respect of a prison, the most senior officer in rank in the station will act as the officer in charge of that prison until such time as the Commissioner General may appoint an officer in charge.
(5) An officer who assumes office under subsection (4) shall exercise the power and perform the duties and functions of an officer in charge, subject to such limitations as the Commissioner General may impose, and shall be accountable to the Commissioner General.
31. Administrative divisions
(1) There shall be Regional and District administrative divisions.
(2) A Regional and District Administrative Division shall include an area declared by the Commissioner General to be such an administrative division for easy and better management.
32. Regional Prisons Commander
(1) The Commissioner General shall, in respect of each region appoint a senior prisons officer to head the region, who shall be known as the Regional Prisons Commander.
(2) The administration and supervision of prisons in a region shall be vested in the Regional Prisons Commander.
33. Functions of Regional Prisons Commander
(1) The Regional Prisons Commander shall, subject to the direction of the Commissioner General, be responsible for the implementation of the departmental policies, projects and production, distribution of supplies and co-ordination of all institutional activities to ensure compliance to national and international standards governing treatment of offenders and prevention of crime in his or her region.
(2) The Regional Prisons Commander will ensure that there is effective staff deployment, ensure there are contingency plans for crisis handling and ensure that the District Commanders supervise all prisons against any human rights abuses within their administrative areas.
(3) The Regional Prisons Commander will maintain regular follow up of reports between the Commissioner General and the region for proper co-ordination and administration.
34. District Prisons Commander
The Commissioner General shall appoint a Senior Prison Officer as District Prisons Commander who shall exercise such powers and perform such duties as the Commissioner General may direct.
35. Security measures
The Commissioner General shall determine the security measures applicable to prisons, and may determine different security measures in respect of different prisons.
PART V—GENERAL POWERS, DUTIES AND PRIVILEGES
OF PRISON OFFICERS.
36. General powers and duties of Prison Officers
(1) A prison officer shall—
(a) exercise or perform such powers and duties or functions as are conferred upon or assigned to him or her by or under this Act by virtue of his or her rank; and
(b) obey all lawful orders and directions in respect of the execution of such duties or functions as he or she may from time to time receive from officers senior in rank to him or her.
(2) In the performance of his or her functions under this Act, a prison officer shall be under the direction and control of the immediate supervisor and shall act in accordance with this Act and the regulations made under this Act, standing orders and administrative instructions made or issued by the Commissioner General.
37. Prison officers to exercise police powers
(1) A prison officer shall have all powers, protection and privileges of a police officer within a prison or while in charge of prisoners for the purpose of transfering any person to or from a prison and for the purpose of apprehending any prisoner who may have escaped or attempted to escape from lawful custody.
(2) A prison officer may, on reasonable suspicion that a person is a deserter from the Service, arrest such person without warrant and shall immediately hand him or her to a police officer for prosecution in a court of law for desertion.
38. Prison officers to be assigned to any part of Uganda
A prison officer may at any time be assigned by the Commissioner General to any part of Uganda for duty or to perform any function conferred upon or assigned to him or her under this Act.
39. Powers of search
(1) A prison officer may at any time examine anything within or being brought into or taken out of a prison and may stop and search any vehicle or persons within a prison or going into or out of a prison or any vehicle which is being driven or parked close to the prison or a prisoner, where the prison officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that such a vehicle or person is unlawfully carrying a prohibited article or any property belonging to or used by the Service or is about to be involved in the commission of an offence under this act.
(2) A prison officer on duty in a prison may refuse entry into the prison premises to any person who refused to be searched and may order any person on the prison premises who refused to be searched to be removed.
(3) Where, upon a search made under subsection (1) a person, other than a prisoner, is found in the unlawful possession of a prohibited article or any property belonging to or used by the Service, the prison officer having made the search may arrest that person, and as soon as practicable hand him or her over to the nearest police station.
(4) A prisoner found in unlawful possession of a prohibited article or any property belonging to or used by the Service upon a search made under subsection (1) shall be dealt with in accordance with the relevant provisions of this Act or the Penal Code as the case may be.
(5) The prisons officer arresting a person under subsection (3) may seize the prohibited article or property belonging to, or used by the Service found in that person’s possession or impound the vehicle involved and such article, property, or vehicle shall be dealt with in accordance with this Act or the Penal Code Act.
(6) The search of a woman under this section shall only be made by a female prison officer while search of a man shall be conducted by a male prison officer.
40. Use of force or weapons by prison officers
(1) The officer in charge may authorise a prison officer to use such force against a prisoner as is reasonably necessary to ensure compliance with lawful orders and to maintain discipline in the prison.
(2) A prison officer shall, in carrying out his or her duty, as far as possible apply non-violet means before resorting to use of force or firearms only if other means remain ineffective or fail to achieve the intended result.
(3) Whenever the lawful use of force or firearms is unavoidable, a prison officer shall—
(a) exercise restraint in such use and act in proportion to the seriousness of the threat and the legitimate objective to be achieved;
b) minimise damage and injury, and respect and preserve the prisoner’s life;
(c) ensure that assistance and medical aid are rendered to any injured or affected prisoners at the earliest possible moment;
(d) where injury or death is caused by the use of force or firearm by a prison officer, the concerned officer shall promptly report the incident to a senior officer who will take necessary and appropriate action;
(e) ensure that relatives or close friends of the injured or affected prisoner are notified at the earliest possible moment.
(4) Whenever an officer in charge considers it necessary for the safe custody of a prisoner that he or she should be confined by means of mechanical restraint in the course of his or her transfer or while temporarily outside the premises of the prison, the officer in charge may cause that prisoner to be so confined in accordance with the prescribed procedure.
(5) If a prisoner attempts to escape or attacks or threatens to attack any prison officer or any other person or in concert with others commits any act of violence, a prison officer authorised under subsection (3) may, whenever it is necessary to prevent the escape or in defence of himself or herself or any other person, use a firearm upon any such prisoner.
(6) The Commissioner General may authorise a prison officer or person employed in or about any prison to be armed with any particular weapon or weapons, other than firearms, for use in the circumstances described in subsection (5) and in those circumstances any prison officer or person so authorised may use the weapon or weapons for any of the purposes mentioned in that subsection.
(7) If a prison officer or person authorised to be armed and acting in circumstances contemplated in subsection (3) and (5), as the case may be, kills or wounds any prisoner, he or she shall not commit an offence.
(8) The use of any force or weapon under this section shall be to disable and not to kill.
41. Senior officers to check unlawful use of force or firearms
(1) A senior officer shall be held responsible if he or she knows, or should have known, that a prison officer under his or her command is resorting, or has resorted, to the unlawful use of force or firearms, and the senior officer did not take any measures in his or her power to prevent, suppress or report such use.
(2) Obedience to superior orders shall be no defence if a prison officer knew that an order to use force or a firearm resulting into death or a serious injury of a prisoner was manifestly unlawful and had a reasonable opportunity to refuse to obey it.
(3) A prisoner affected by the unlawful use of force and firearms, or their legal representatives, or in the case of death of a prisoner, their dependants, shall have access to an independent judicial process.
42. Circumstances under which a prison officer may use a firearm
(1) Subject to section 40, a prison officer may use such force against a prisoner as is reasonably necessary in order to make the prisoner obey lawful orders to maintain discipline in a prison.
(2) A prison officer may use weapons against any prisoner escaping or attempting to escape except that—
(a) resort shall not be made to the use of any weapon unless the prison officer has reasonable ground to believe that he or she cannot otherwise prevent the escape; and
(b) a firearm shall not be used against a prisoner unless the prison officer has first given a clear warning to the prisoner that he or she is about to fire upon him or her and sufficient time is given for the warning to be observed and such warning goes unheeded.
(3) A prison officer may use weapons against any prisoner—
(a) engaged in any combined breaking out or in any attempt to force or break open the outside door or gate or enclosure wall of the prison, and may continue to use such weapons so long as such combined breaking out is actually prosecuted;
(b) using violence to any prison officer or other person as such prison officer has reasonable ground to believe that the prison officer or other person is in danger of life or limb, or that other grievous harm is likely to be caused to him or her;
(c) engaged with others in riotous or threatening behaviour and refused to desist when called upon to do so.
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