Selebi release cynicism justified
22 July 2012 | The Citizen
Both Shaik and Selebi were convicted and sentenced to 15 years. Now both are free on medical parole.
Shaik may have ruined it for future politically connected fraudsters with his abuse of the system. He was not terminally ill when released in March 2009. His golfing and shopping exploits, coupled with his aggressive behaviour towards journalists, suggested he was in quite feisty condition. His release was a thundering disgrace.
Selebi reportedly needs dialysis for a severe kidney condition. Following the uproar over Shaik, the law has been clarified and it does allow for medical parole in cases of terminal illness.
However, the problem here is that the public has not been informed of the details of Selebi’s condition. In normal circumstances public disclosure should not be necessary or even appropriate. But the outpouring of public scepticism shows that these are not normal circumstances.
The government must take the public into its confidence by disclosing enough information to dispel doubts about his condition and about who will pay for his expensive treatment.
As it stands, Selebi’s release reeks of political favouritism.
The impression is there is one law for the politically connected and another for the rest of us. If the ANC leadership looks kindly on you, you can get away with all manner of crimes.
While Selebi is not generally seen as part of the Zuma camp, his release will strengthen the president’s chances of re-election at Mangaung in December.
The move sends a reassuring signal to crooked cadres that under Zuma the ANC will continue to look after its own.
YOU MAY ALSO BE INTERESTED IN
looklocal Joburg South
looklocal Pretoria East
looklocal North East Joburg
looklocal Pretoria Moot
looklocal Randfontein Westonaria