Tanzania's President John Magufuli on Friday pardoned 3,540 inmates as the country commemorated the 55th anniversary of the Union of Tanganyika and Zanzibar.
“It is the government’s expectations that they [convicts] will rejoin and cooperate with members of the society in nation building...we also expect them to avoid committing offences that will take them back to prison,” reads as statement from the presidency.
722 prisoners will be released Friday.
President Magufuli invoked the power of mercy in accordance to Article 45 (1) (d) of the Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania.
Beneficiaries of the pardon include people convicted before March 15 this year and those suffering from diseases such as HIV/Aids, TB and terminally ill cancer patients.
Others are prisoners above 70 years old, those with physical and mental disabilities, female prisoners convicted while pregnant and those who gave birth while in prison.
However, the clemency does not apply to those convicted of murder, suicide and infanticide and those serving life imprisonment.
The statement added that people convicted for indecent assault, rape, defilement and violence against children, convicts of car and motorcycle theft, destruction of infrastructure and those serving jail terms under parole will also not benefit from the pardon.