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10,000 petitioners benefit from the power of mercy programme

At  least 10,000 prisoners  have  benefited from the power of Mercy programme since the exercise begun in June last  year.

The  Deputy Vice Chair (DVC) of the Power of Mercy Committee, Dr. Janet  Kirui  expressed satisfaction that at least all  the  beneficiaries  have not relapsed to their old  habits of committing crime.

Speaking  when  the  committee paid a courtesy call to Trans Nzoia County Commissioner (CC), Samson Ojwang  on  Wednesday, Dr. Kirui  attributed the success to collaboration between different stakeholders involved in the programme.

She  asked chiefs and their assistants to help sensitize the community on the programme, adding that the society was  important especially in accepting ex- prisoners back home.

The   DVC  said the committee was in Kitale to sensitize inmates on their rights to petition the president to pardon them.

She  asked community members to learn to forgive the offenders and welcome them back to society once they benefit from the programme.

“We have had cases of people who have been pardoned and have changed positively, some of them are even pastors and are helping the society,” she said.

On  his part, the CC asked the committee to work closely with chiefs and their assistants for success of the programme.

Ojwang  said before releasing beneficiaries of the programme, local administrators must be informed for monitoring purposes.

In  assessing a petitioner, the committee considers age of the convict, circumstances, nature and seriousness of the offence, period served as well as the personal circumstances of the offender.

Other  considerations also include the interest of the state and community, post-conviction conduct and reports from prison and probation departments.

By  Pauline  Ikanda

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