Stories

Betty is close to completing her law degree from within prison

4.3.2021

Betty is close to completing her law degree from within prison

Betty Florence Mbatudde

Betty is a 43-year-old mother of one, to her son Nateete. The family used to live in Kawempe division on the outskirts of Kampala, where she worked as a teacher.

“As a lower primary teacher, my dream was to start my [own] school, I didn’t know that I would become a lawyer, which I feel has helped me discover my true desirable career,” explains Betty.

“I was introduced to Justice Defenders by Susan Kigula who was a paralegal inmate at the time,” Betty remembers. “Using the knowledge I have acquired from Justice Defenders, I managed to convince the judge in my appeal process, overturning my death sentence. I now have two and a half years remaining until I can go home after a long time in prison.”

 Now, with the support of Justice Defenders, Betty is a student of law with the University of London and spends most of her time reading books alongside working as a paralegal in Luzira Women's Prison, Uganda.

“I do more reading than ever and attend virtual classes because I am finishing my law course soon. I also help my peers in offering free legal advice, especially on how to represent themselves in court.

“Most of the female inmates come from poor backgrounds and therefore, cannot afford to pay private advocates to represent them in court."

Betty explains the impact her studies and law practice have had on her and other inmates: “Through education and training, Justice Defenders has been a voice of the defenceless communities, brought light into the eyes of many who can now represent themselves in court.

“Justice Defenders has added value in me, by offering me the opportunity of studying law at the prestigious University of London.

“Though I do all those activities, I don’t forget my God who has transformed, and blessed my life in prison.”

Find out more about the law degree we facilitate within prisons.