Our History

Evolve was founded in 2014 by Tanya Murshed and was formally registered in 2016. Historically, our focus has been on sentencing in capital cases.  Most of the Evolve team have been volunteering within the Ugandan criminal justice system for several years, initially running a mitigation project for the Centre for Capital Punishment Studies, following the abolition of the mandatory death sentence in the landmark constitutional case of Attorney General v Susan Kigula and 417 others (Constitutional Appeal No 03 of 2006) [2009] UGSC 6.

In this case, the Supreme Court confirmed the Constitutional Court’s ruling that the automatic death sentence upon conviction, without affording a defendant the chance to mitigate was unconstitutional. One of our largest projects to date has been to lead the re-sentencing process of beneficiaries of the Susan Kigula case. Our lawyers oversaw the collection of mitigation; trained law students, lawyers and judges prior to the sentencing sessions; developed a pilot scheme of pre-sentence and social inquiry reports and mental health assessments and wrote legal submissions. As a result, 243 out of 266 individuals were given sentences other than death.