Fraser 'must answer' Zuma parole questions

Fraser may place Zuma under medical parole in terms of section 75(7) of the Correctional Services Act (CSA), but this is still subject to another part of the act, Section 79.

2021-09-07 02:51:00 PM

Fraser may place Zuma under medical parole in terms of section 75(7) of the Correctional Services Act (CSA), but this is still subject to another part of the act, Section 79.

Fraser may place Zuma under medical parole in terms of section 75(7) of the Correctional Services Act (CSA), but this is still subject to another part of the act, Section 79.

If National Commissioner of Correctional Services, Arthur Fraser did not solicit an independent medical report on former President Zuma, his medical parole decision is illegal. So says the Democratic Alliance (DA) as well as legal experts who have raised red flags in the former statesman's successful bid to be granted medical parole, following his historic 15-month contempt of court sentence. The DA will be taking legal steps to have the decision to grant medical parole to Jacob Zuma reviewed, the party announced on Tuesday. Fraser to justify decision DA leader John Steenhuisen says if it turns out Fraser used his...

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If National Commissioner of Correctional Services, Arthur Fraser did not solicit an independent medical report on former President Zuma, his medical parole decision is illegal.So says the Democratic Alliance (DA) as well as legal experts who have raised red flags in the former statesman’s successful bid to be granted medical parole, following his historic 15-month contempt of court sentence.

The DA will be taking legal steps to have the decision to grant medical parole to Jacob Zuma reviewed, the party announced on Tuesday.Fraser to justify decisionDA leader John Steenhuisen says if it turns out Fraser used his discretion to override the decision of a review panel, there is a specific process he would have had to follow. headtopics.com

“We will, by way of an application to court, seek the record of decision that led to the granting of this parole,” he says.Anti-corruption lobby group Open Secrets lawyer Tabitha Paine says there is a good chance both the NPA and the DA can successfully argue for the reversal of Zuma’s medical parole in court.

Fraser may place Zuma under medical parole in terms of section 75(7) of the Correctional Services Act (CSA), but this is still subject to another part of the act, Section 79 which deals with the decision making process for medical parole.“Medical parole is slightly different from other forms of parole, in that the convict (Zuma) is granted parole because of the dire circumstances of their ill-health. It is for this reason that there are strict requirements for granting medical parole. So the NPA can take the decision of the Department of Correctional Services on review to the High Court if the requirements of section 79 were not met. This is something contemplated by the DA and others,” she remarks.

Further to this, the NPA should have access to certain information such as the report of the Medical Advisory Board.This is if such a report even exists, considering Zuma has thus far refused an independent medical examination appointed by the state.This is the missing piece of the puzzle the DA wants to obtain through a Protection of Access to Information Act (PAIA) application forcing Fraser to release the full record of the decision that led to the granting of Zuma’s parole.

Also Read:‘Mockery of SA law’: Zuma’s medical parole in violation of Act, says DAHow the medical parole process worksThe process of granting medical parole includes obtaining a full medical report by independent doctors over and above Jacob Zuma’s own doctors. headtopics.com

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Such a report would need to be presented to the parole board and the relevant doctors, and only then can the Commissioner use his discretion to override the decision.The review will seek to determine whether these steps took place, and in the correct order.

Paine points out that in the DCS’ statement, they only mention a medical report submitted to them by Zuma.This is supposed to be the first step in the process of determining if a convict should be placed on medical parole. The medical report has to be verified by an independent source.

The CSA compels the Minister of Correctional Services Ronald Lamola to establish a medical advisory board who will then submit their own medical report, in addition to the one submitted by Zuma.“Nowhere in the DCS’ statement has there been mention of either a medical advisory board or an independent medical report. One can assume that the reason for its omission, in among a fair amount of detail, is because that step was not complied with. That would presumably make the granting of medical parole defective.”

If there is no independent medical report:The DA would have a solid basis for challenging Fraser’s decision to release Zuma, according to PaineIf there were no requirement for a independent report, anyone sentenced for a crime of less than 24 months could simply get their doctor to write a medical report without it ever being independently verified. headtopics.com

This essential check, particularly in the face of powerful and wealthy convicts such as Zuma, is the purpose of section 79(3). Its absence would render the granting of medial parole materially defective.The DAsays it wants to prevent a repeat of the perceived abuse of the same system as in the case of Zuma’s former business associate Schabir Shaik, who is still alive 12 years after he was granted medical parole ostensibly in order for him to die a dignified death from a supposed terminal illness.

He was photographed months later, playing golf in a Durban North estate.“In the case of Arthur Fraser, his murky past as Zuma’s compromised spy boss should have disqualified him immediately from his promotion to prisons boss. It is highly unlikely that this deployment by President Ramaphosa, where he could continue to do the ANC’s bidding, was a coincidence,” says Steenhuisen.

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Also Read:Former President Jacob Zuma hospitalisedIs this the new get out of jail card?Medical parole should be available to all inmates who are gravely or terminally ill, Paine points out. However, it should not be used by the powerful to escape justice.

Its original purpose is a humane one, meant to give the terminally ill a dignified death.Bear in mind Zuma is incarcerated for the completely avoidable crime of contempt, which – had he respected the law and the Constitutional Court – could have been avoided.

It is therefore ever more important to ensure he isn’t, in fact, abusing the system to avoid jail time.“South Africans have been devastated by the pandemic, crushed by an austerity budget and are still reeling from the recent looting, we hope that justice is done and seen to be done, and that legal provisions that are meant to help some of the more vulnerable in our society are not exploited for the purposes of evading justice yet again,” she concludes.

Read more: The Citizen News »

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I don't see how this parole is improper VoetsekZuma VoetsekFraser VoetsekANC

Prisoner rights body says ill inmates must be afforded medical parole like ZumaThe SA Prisoners Organisation for Human Rights (Sapohr) has urged the correctional services department to also afford medical parole to ill prisoners in the same situation or worse off than former president Jacob Zuma. And so they should.... Let the rule be consistently applied, if there are prisoners who are also sick then they should be released on medical parole, we can't have a diabetic prisoner or a prisoner with hypertension, they could die at any given time and therefore they should be released.

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Prisoner rights body says ill inmates must be afforded medical parole like ZumaThe SA Prisoners Organisation for Human Rights has urged the correctional services department to also afford medical parole to ill prisoners in the same situation or worse off than former president Jacob Zuma. Can Zuma be left to go quietly into the night Here we go . . . . . If this happens there will be a whole wave of criminals following Zuma