I wake up with vigour at 04:00AM
To race for space in the crowded bathroom.
After sitting in twos for the Fall-In count
I enthusiastically rush for search at the gate.
I strip to be searched in the bra and knicker.
I hand back my prison uniform,
And sit in the bus heading to court.
After hours of waiting in the holding cell
I stand with hope in the suspect’s dock.
“Your trial magistrate is indisposed.
Court adjourned to a month away.
You are further remanded to prison.”
What a disappointment!
What an anti-climax!
After a month of rotting in prison
I step again into the suspects’ dock.
“The State Prosecutors are on strike.
Adjourned to a month away.
Further remanded to prison.”
The following month was a repeat.
“Your trial magistrate is abroad.
Case adjourned to a date next month.”
The next month the court is closed for renovation.
Thereafter, the complainant is absent.
And thereafter, the case file is lost.
Adjournment after adjournment perpetual
With no case business in between.
This is how justice is delayed.
by Stella Nyanzi
Dr Stella Nyanzi has been incarcerated in Luzira Women’s Prison in Uganda since 2nd November, 2018. She is a writer, researcher and activist working and organising around Sexuality, Family Planning and Public Health.
As friends and comrades of Dr Nyanzi, we demand an end to this persecution of Dr. Nyanzi and all Ugandans who seek freedom. Join us by following and posting with the following hashtags on social media: #PushforStellaNyanzi, #StellaSpeaks, #45Poems4Freedom