The DA has this morning written to the Chairperson of the Correctional Supervision and Parole Review Board, Judge Siraj Desai, on the matter regarding convicted fraudster, Schabir Shaik’s parole conditions in light of his shameful verbal attack on a journalist yesterday.
This comes after reports this morning alleging that Mr Shaik verbally attacked a journalist who called him for comment on the relaxing of his parole conditions, to which he responded by hurling verbal attacks and profanities at the journalist. Mr Shaik is reported as stating that his health had significantly improved enough for him to headbutt the journalist and kick him in the genitals.
In this conversation Mr Shaik threatened to assault the journalist and was quoted as saying, “I will break you, white boy!”
Just last week the Correctional Supervision and Parole Review Board lightened Mr Shaik’s parole conditions because he was believed to have demonstrated good behaviour and showed progress in his rehabilitation.
If this morning’s reports are to be believed as accurate; the relaxation of Mr Shaik’s parole condition should be immediately withdrawn because his conduct and character in this regard does not represent a man who has fully rehabilitated and ready to be reintegrated into society. In fact, it would appear that he has an anger management problem.
Mr Shaik was released because he was in the final stages of a terminal illness, this no longer seems to be the case. By his own admission he has categorically stated- in this conversation- that his health had sufficiently improved to be able to assault someone.
It must be noted that at the time this was a controversial decision given there was much speculation that Mr Shaik was not in fact terminally ill. Indeed we suspected that Shaik was not eligible for medical parole but rather that he was receiving preferential treatment because he was closely linked to the President.
Additionally, Shaik knew that ordinary parole would not be granted two and half years into a fifteen-year sentence and now wants the Correctional Services Minister to grant him ordinary parole ex post facto.
I have therefore appealed to Judge Desai to act in terms of Section 77(1)(b) of the Correctional Services Act which empowers the Correctional Supervisions and Parole Review Board to “substitute its own decision and make any order which the Correctional Supervision and Parole Board ought to have made.”
In the interest of the fairness as a critical component of South Africa’s criminal justice system and its integrity, we submit that it is crucial that Judge Desai engage our request with the due gravity it deserves of we are to restore and maintain equality before the law for all South Africans regardless of their political connectedness.
Issued by James Selfe , James Selfe is the Chairperson of DA Federal Council and Shadow Minister of Correctional Services