JINJA: Inmate shot while escaping from court dies at Jinja Hospital

Jinja, (UG):- Uganda Prisons Service has confirmed that the inmate who was last week shot as he attempted to escape from Jinja Court cells has died of bullet wounds at Jinja Regional Referral Hospital.

The deceased, identified as Abel Muwanika, 27, alias Abusale alongside his accomplice Ashraf Ssenoga, alias Vampire, 25, both charged with aggravated robbery were on Thursday last week shot at by prison warders in a tense court session after he attempted to escape while being led to the suspect’s holding cells at the court.

The duo had just been denied bail by Jinja Grade One Magistrate, Ms Anxious Atumanya.

In a development on Tuesday, Prisons spokesperson, Mr Frank Baine said; “the inmate succumbed to injuries after being taken to the Jinja regional referral hospital. We identified the relatives of the deceased, and they have already taken his body for burial,” he said.

“The second escapee (Ssenoga), who sustained minor injuries to his leg, is still undergoing treatment at Kirinya prison’s sickbay, but after recovery, he will be charged with attempted escape,” Mr Baine explained.

Authorities explained that Muwanika sustained a gunshot wound to his mouth as he tried to take cover.

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“The inmates were running openly in handcuffs. The officer in the central guard fired warning bullets to stop them in vain; and in an attempt to disable them, Ssenoga was shot in the leg while Muwanika sustained a gunshot wound to the mouth,” Mr Baine said.

He further warned inmates against “unnecessary misconduct”, including attempting to escape from lawful custody.

Several cases of inmates escaping or trying to escape from prisons in Uganda have been registered.
On September 16, 2020, at least 223 inmates escaped from Moroto Prison in the restive north-eastern Karamoja Sub Region after attacking the prison wardens and stealing guns and ammunition from the armoury. During the hunt for the prisoners, 12 were shot dead.

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In December 2023, three inmates escaped from the Mityna government prison.

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