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 Free: Convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik,

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PosOnderwerp: Free: Convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik,   Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:22 pm

who was punished for violating his parole conditions last year, has had his "free time" reinstated. Photo: Steve Lawrence, The Star

Shaik's parole 'relaxed'
August 11 2010 at 05:23PM Get IOL on your
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Next » 1 2 By Barbara Cole
Staff Reporter

Convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik, who was punished for violating his parole conditions last year, has had his "free time" reinstated and is in line for more.

The medical parolee is now allowed to leave the confines of his Morningside, Durban, home for six hours every Saturday, according to Mnikelwa Nxele, the regional commissioner of Correctional Services.

The businessman, who was once President Jacob Zuma's financial adviser, will now be able to move freely "and do whatever he wants" from 11am to 5pm on Saturdays, Nxele said yesterday.

This is in addition to the four hours he is allowed on Fridays to attend prayers at his mosque.
Continues Below ↓

And, "if he behaves in the next three months, like other parolees he may get another four hours during the course of the week", Nxele added.

Shaik had four hours slashed from his six-hour free time allocation after he was spotted shopping in Durban on a Wednesday in December, well outside his permitted free time.

Shaik, who became one of the country's most talked-about prisoners, was sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment for fraud and corruption in 2005. He was convicted on two counts of corruption, which included allegations of brokering a bribe from an international arms company for Zuma, then the ANC deputy president.

Pressure group AfriForum, which aims to be a voice for minorities, had lodged a complaint with the Department of Correctional Services after Sunday newspapers published photographs of Shaik shopping in Florida Road, near his home.

Shaik had admitted violating his parole conditions when questioned by department officials, the department said.

It then tightened Shaik's parole conditions and his time out was "degraded", said Nxele.

Apart from forfeiting four of his six hours of free time, he was also prohibited from visiting his doctor's rooms.

Instead, all his medical consultations had to be conducted at his home or at a place decided by his new parole officer, a senior department official.

Correctional Services Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula warned in December that Shaik would be re-arrested the next time he violated his parole conditions.

The DA, which had called for a review of the decision to grant Shaik medical parole, said then that the reduction of hours was nothing but a slap on the wrist.

A department spokesman said at the time that Shaik's behaviour would be monitored and the situation possibly reviewed after six months.

A committee has now evaluated the situation and reinstated his forfeited hours.

"But he must stay at home for the rest of the time," Nxele said.

"And if he is found outside his free hours, he is in for trouble."

Shaik would remain a medical parolee "as long as he is alive", he added.
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PosOnderwerp: Re: Free: Convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik,   Thu Aug 12, 2010 10:43 pm

Presidency mum on Shaik issue
August 12 2010 at 03:16PM Get IOL on your
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By Carien du Plessis

As the Presidency maintains its silence about convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik's application for a presidential pardon, the chances of his medical parole being reversed are getting slimmer.

By Wednesday, presidential spokesperson Zizi Kodwa had not responded to repeated messages asking whether President Jacob Zuma had applied his mind to Shaik's application for a pardon, as he promised in October when it came to light.

At the same time, Inspecting Judge of Correctional Services, Deon van Zyl, said he was considering a request by DA MP James Selfe to review the decision to release Shaik on medical grounds.

Since his release in March in 2009 because of "life-threatening hypertension", Zuma's former financial adviser has been seen around Durban, shopping, dining and playing golf and apparently in fair health.
Continues Below ↓

His release came about six months before amendments to the Correctional Services Act went into effect, giving the judge the right to review his parole.

Before that, Correctional Services Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula and her national commissioner were the only ones who could request a review.

Mapisa-Nqakula said in 2009 that she would not go back on the decision of her predecessor, Ngconde Balfour, to stand by Shaik's release.

Judge Van Zyl said he was consulting legal experts on whether the amended act could be applied retrospectively, or whether it applied only to medical parole cases after the new law came into effect. "We can only get involved if the law is retrospective," he said.

The judge said the amended act did not stipulate that it should apply to earlier cases. He was likely to respond to Selfe's letter of request next week.

Selfe on Wednesday night said that if his request to Judge Van Zyl failed, there was still the option of appealing to prisons head, Tom Moyane, to send the decision for reconsideration.

The six-month period for asking the courts to review the parole decision expired in 2009.

"Shaik's parole needs to be reviewed because it was wrong and unlawful and because he was not terminally ill.

"It is a blight on the system of parole as a whole, and as long as the matter is not put right, people will view the medical parole systems as flawed," Selfe said.

People were already saying on radio talk shows that former police commissioner Jackie Selebi, sentenced this month to 15 years for corruption, would probably get terminally ill as soon as he entered prison, Selfe added.

A government review of the medical parole system is under way, with the proposed changes expected to be considered by a cabinet committee on Thursday.

These would provide for prisoners to be released on medical parole on humane grounds when seriously ill, but they need not be terminally ill.

Mechanisms to send back to jail those who recovered from their illnesses are also expected.

The changes are to be done in the form of an amendment to the Correctional Services Amendment Act, rather than changes in regulations as Mapisa-Nqakula had wanted.

About 60 percent of "terminally ill" prisoners released on medical parole recover, according to Department of Correctional Services figures.

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