Arua. More than 20 suspects in police cells at Arua Central Police Station have been granted police bond in an effort to decongest the crowded police cells.
Arua CPS has three small rooms two for males and one for female suspects, which were built in early 1950s, with blocked sanitary channels.
Jude Nasucha, the CIID officer Arua CPS confirmed the release of the suspects and said because of the ongoing strike by judicial officers countrywide for salary increment, many suspects have remained at police cells as more are brought in.
“Last week and over the weekend, we received more suspects and as you know there is a strike by the judicial officers and this has led to congestion in our cells,” Nasucha said.
The officer added that police decided to release suspects of minor offences like theft, assault, threatening violence, trespass among others but is holding those of murder, robbery, rape and other capital offences.
The Regional Human Rights Officers here have always called for expeditious investigations into petty offences reported at the police to have it decongested. According to police those released are expected to report to police on regular basis and until such a time courts resume and their files shall be forwarded to court for further management.
Out of 64 detainees at the cells yesterday, about half had been released but more suspects continued to be ushered in from the police outposts in the 28-Sub Counties of Arua district.
Nasucha says police in the outposts are also been equipped on handling minor cases without necessarily forwarding them to Arua CPS as the congestion in the cells remain appalling.
According to the Condominium of Laws, a person is innocent until proven guilty by competent courts of law and such a suspect is entitled to unconditional bail after 48 hours in cells.
On average, Arua CPS receives 15 suspects a day and many of them spend up to a week in police cells on reasons that investigations are ongoing.