Kenya is drafting a Bill that will see its nationals in foreign jails repatriated to serve the rest of their terms in local prisons.
“If bilateral agreements and treaties with the sentencing countries are put in place, then it will be possible for Kenyans to be brought back to the country and jailed here,” said a statement from Attorney-General Githu Muigai’s office on Sunday.
Prof Muigai is guiding the drafting of proposals that will form the basis of implementing the law.
“The Transfer of Prisoners Act is aimed at facilitating arrangements for the transfer of persons serving sentences for criminal offences committed in Kenya or countries outside Kenya, pursuant to subsisting agreements,” read the statement.
“The Bill also aims to ensure that prisoners are accorded basic dignities in line with human rights laws and international conventions. It will also allow inmates to serve their sentences within the communities that they have ties with.”
However, the conditions for transfer can only be made through an application by the concerned countries through the Attorney-General or by an application from the prisoner to the AG.
The Bill comes at a time when Kenya has jailed several pirates, people linked to terrorism and illegal foreigners.
Several Kenyans have also been jailed abroad for different crimes, including drug trafficking.
Prof Muigai announced the proposed law during a visit to a women’s prison in Nairobi, where he received petitions from inmates seeking presidential pardons.
He met several inmates from Pakistan who appealed to be transferred to prisons in their country.
It is estimated that close to 3,000 Kenyans are serving jail sentences in various countries, with Kenyan prisons also holding an almost similar number of foreigners.