Ex-convict, Boyson Mokone is living with the aftermaths of being convicted wrongfully. Mokone was wrongly convicted in 1998 after he was accused of rape.
His life dramatically changed that day. He had to serve one year in prison even though he was innocent.
Mokone told The Midweek Sun that following his arrest, he was acquitted of all criminal charges, but looking for a job as an ex-convict is a nightmare as no one wants to associate or employ someone who is from prison.
Mokone has been called for job interviews many times, but could not secure any employment although he did well in interviews.
He shared that the minute the potential employer realised that he has been convicted of a crime, they turn him away.
He said this has affected him personally as it shows that there is still discrimination from employers both in government, as well as the private sector.
He said that some inmates are wrongfully accused of different crimes and their hope is to see themselves out of prison and their fingerprints cleared, but unfortunately that does not always happen as a result, criminal records hang over their heads all their lives.
After years of being unable to secure a well-paying job, and always being shunned, Mokone started an organisation to raise awareness about the dangers of alcohol and drugs.
Meanwhile Lawyer, Lawrence Lecha of Lecha & Associates says people being wrongly accused and convicted is a worldwide phenomenon. Unfortunately little can be done to avoid such a situation as it boils down to proper investigations by the Police. Lecha said there is therefore a need to properly train and equip the Police with investigation skills.
He noted that in a situation where the subsequent evidence establishes that a person was unfairly judged and therefore inconvenienced, then the person has to be freed and in some instances even compensated by the state for wrongful conviction and incarceration.
“Most of the times when someone is finally freed after being wrongly convicted then they can sue for wrongful conviction and imprisonment. Where one finds themselves in this unfortunate situation then one can consult a lawyer to assist,” Lecha advised.