HomeAfrica-NewsDefend Our Democracy says SCA ruling on Zuma's medical parole shows no...

Defend Our Democracy says SCA ruling on Zuma’s medical parole shows no one is above the law


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Former President Jacob Zuma.

  • Defend Our Democracy says a Supreme Court of Appeals ruling on former President Jacob Zuma’s medical parole proves no one is above the law.
  • It has also influenced a Constitutional Court ruling on the man who was jailed for the murder of Chis Hani.
  • He said that South Africans had persevered through the difficult period of Hani’s assassination.

The civic organization Defend Our Democracy has intervened in a Supreme Court of Appeals (SCA) ruling on former President Jacob Zuma and a Constitutional Court ruling on Janusz Walus, who was jailed for the murder of Chris Hani.

He says the SCA’s ruling on Zuma’s illegal medical probation from the Estcourt Correctional Services facility demonstrated fairness and that no one is above the law.

“It emphasizes that policies and procedures cannot be applied selectively, and friends or family cannot obtain preferential treatment from the national commissioner of correctional services,” the organization said.

Monday’s ruling found that former correctional services chief Arthur Fraser illegally authorized Zuma’s release on medical parole in September last year.

READ | Jacob Zuma must go back to jail and prison bosses must ‘legally’ decide on his release: appeals court

Zuma was arrested in July of last year for contempt of the Constitutional Court. Less than two months after his 15-month sentence, Fraser approved his medical parole due to “poor health.”

The SCA said it would not consider whether the time Zuma had spent on medical probation should be considered in determining the remaining period of his sentence. He said Fraser’s successor, Commissioner Makgothi Thobakgale, should look into it.

In a separate unanimous Constitutional Court ruling authored by Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, the high court ordered Walus released on probation. Hani was an ANC and SACP leader who was assassinated in 1993.

READ | Fury when Zondo orders Chris Hani’s killer Janusz Walus released within 10 days

Zondo said Walus apologized to Hani’s family several times, acknowledging that his crime nearly plunged SA into civil war and derailed its progress in its fight for freedom and democracy. He quoted the Bill of Rights, saying that he protected freedom fighters and apartheid supporters alike.

The organization echoed Zondo’s view, saying South Africans persevered through the difficult period of Hani’s assassination and achieved the freedom and democracy they had fought for.

“This democracy is similarly threatened today, and it is through the same strength and sobriety, defending our hard-won Constitution, that we will successfully defend it,” the organization added.


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