HOME affairs minister Steven Kampyongo says the advisory committee on prerogative of mercy declined to consider any petitions of inmates convicted of defilement in order to send a strong signal to would be offenders of the crime. President Edgar Lungu has pardoned 464 inmates from various correctional facilities countrywide ahead of the commemorations of Africa Freedom Day.
Kampyongo told journalists in Lusaka that the Head of State had pardoned 413 inmates and commuted 51. The Advisory Committee on the prerogative of mercy recommended fifty two petitioners out of 123 for commutation of death sentences to life and life sentences to terminable sentences ranging from 25 to 40 years.
He said 23 of the pardoned inmates were detainees under the pleasure of the President as they committed capital offences owing to mental illness and held in accordance with Criminal Procedure Code at three correctional facilities. Clifford Dimba, also known as General Kanene, was in 2015 released from prison after a presidential pardon for a sexual assault conviction.