‘Terminally ill’ Selebi’s Sunday shopping jaunt

2013-10-07 00:00

JACKIE Selebi, former head of police and convicted criminal who was released on medical parole last year — apparently at death’s door, has had a miraculously recovery in his health.

Selebi was photographed by a reader of sister paper Beeld as he was driven in his 6-series BMW to buy the Sunday papers at a centre in Monument Park, Pretoria.

A friendly Selebi chatted with a few shoppers before buying Sunday papers.

He walked with help, but seemed in good health.

When Beeld called a few hours later asking about his health, he said he felt a little better and he hoped his condition would improve further. He added his illness kept him at home and prevented him from driving.

When Beeld asked him if he could confirm that he went to the shops yesterday morning, he said he had only bought the papers — before cutting the call.

The medical parole board on July 20 decided that Selebi could be released because he was suffering from irreversible kidney failure, a stroke, heart and eye disease, a pulmonary embolism, and motor function impairment.

His sudden, severely-ill state had surprised doctors, especially his kidney failure, which normally has a long medical history.

Correctional Services Minister S’bu Ndebele had said Selebi could go home because his department had limited capacity to provide care for terminally ill patients.

Selebi was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment on August 3, 2010 for taking bribes from convicted drug dealer Glenn Agliotti.

He collapsed at his house in December 2011 after his final appeal failed.

James Smalberger of the Correctional Services Department yesterday said Selebi did not break any of his parole conditions if he did his own grocery shopping.

Selebi’s parole conditions have already been reduced from house arrest to having to visit his parole officers once every two months, with Correctional Services officers inspecting his house once every two months.

If he meets all his parole conditions, he also gets time off on a a Sunday to go to church or grocery shopping.

In 2012/13 there were 652 natural deaths in prisons and only 26 people released on medical parole.

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