Special remissions project 'not perfect'

2012-09-13 22:24

Cape Town - President Jacob Zuma on Thursday stopped short of apologising for crimes committed by convicted criminals who were released as part of the special remission of sentence process.

Responding to a question in the National Assembly, Zuma said the screening system for the 45 033 offenders released this year was not flawless.

It was impossible to tell whether prisoners would re-offend.

"If you have those who were released who did a wrong thing, of course we accept that this is a wrong thing that they've done, and we sympathise with the families who were indeed the victims of this," said Zuma.

Zuma defended himself against opposition party criticism for signing off on the parole of offenders.

"The president did not do anything out of the framework of the law and the Constitution. Special remission is a normal thing, universally."

He was reacting to DA Parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko, who cited various crimes committed by some of those released.

"Earlier this year, it was reported that a 94-year old KwaZulu-Natal woman was attacked and raped by a paroled prisoner who had been released in terms of the special remission programme," she told Zuma.

Congress of the People MP Paul Mnguni followed on the statement.

"I want to ask that can you in front of that old granny who was raped, can you say you are proud of this prisoner who has become a rapist. Can you safely say that?" Mnguni asked.

Zuma's response was brief: "No, I will never say that in front of that granny, I will sympathise with her."

Preliminary statistics provided by the correctional services department show that at least 114 of those released under the programme are back in jail.

Zuma said he expected an update from correctional services minister Sibusisu Ndebele in October.

  • phillipmongatane - 2012-09-13 23:12

    The special remissions project really ruined some peoples lives.some of the prisoners released commited terrible crimes immediately after being freed. I think special remissions project was just a front to pardon prisoners like jecky selebi

      hermann.hanekom - 2012-09-14 06:51

      You can't rehabilitate 99% of the criminals, you can only recycle them like Zuma did.

  • SharonE - 2012-09-13 23:17

    I wonder how many people given this remission are back behind bars, having ruined their victims' lives after being released - victims who would have been unharmed had these criminals been left exactly where they belong - in a cage.

      infijar.ken - 2012-09-14 00:00


      denis.gomo - 2012-09-14 05:59

      They will be cak behind bars only if they get caught after committing crimes. With SAPS not knowing the meaning of the word "ivestigation" I think we will still be suffering from the effects of this remmission 5 yrs on from now.

  • glen.e.huysamer - 2012-09-13 23:34

    It is as if Zooma was releasing his criminal army, I wonder why the minister of defence did not put he SANDF on full alert when this happened surely this lot was a much greater threat than Malema ever was.

  • tommo.too - 2012-09-13 23:41

    It IS possible to tell if prisoners will reoffend Zumaluna. That's what psychologists in the prisonservice are supposed to be doing....

      gieljam.gomtor - 2012-09-14 06:57

      What psychologists ? most if not all have fled the country as is the case with our once world class forensic people; most of those left behind are now deriving their decisions from sites on the internet .

  • Hendrik JJ Kruger - 2012-09-14 05:41

    Strange he's not blaming this on apartheid too - his usual scapegoat!

  • danny.levin.351 - 2012-09-14 06:02

    "It was impossible to tell whether prisoners would re-offend."... That's why you keep them in jail (where they were put in the first place because a judge considered them to be a danger to siciety) you Stoop!d Mororn!!

  • elethu.mkhangelwa - 2012-09-14 06:45

    What is happening in this country is really getting worse day by day, sad part is the south africans are seating nd pointing fingers to each other, people shld stop being stereotyped, we living in 21 century there is no use of fyting what shld have happen bt wat shld we do now tht we living in this country

  • sisie.indola - 2012-09-14 07:15

    There is an old saying "a leopard never changes his spots" this is so true but the idiots who play this game of early release are experts at hiding their true agenda. Yes sure prisoners are "rehabilitated" and Santa Claus is real. And Zuma is so arrogant at the moment, that i keep wondering what is his agenda besides destroying this beautiful land, and the sad part is that this country has gone to the dogs on Zuma's watch.

  • arthur.salvado - 2012-09-14 07:28

    Soon there will be no more bananas in this banana republic. They would all have been consumed en masse by politicians. Go figure

  • Pieter Strydom - 2012-09-14 07:35

    our country is being run by a paw paw and a bunch of vegetables !!!!

  • Pieter Strydom - 2012-09-14 07:37

    our country is being run by a paw paw and a bunch of vegetables

  • mahlorislash - 2012-09-14 08:37

    There are so many experts commenting on this site, lol. I might learn something

      arthur.marks.754 - 2012-09-14 10:16

      @mahlorislash, what you can learn is VOTE DA, and go forth and preach DA to the masses. How's that for the lesson of the day? I thank you.

  • bless.boswell - 2012-09-14 09:47

    Stop making excuses and get out. Let professionals run the country.

  • jessica.main.501 - 2012-09-14 11:18

    he wont understand that how bad is that a old lady attacked and rape by a paroled prisoner . beacuse it didnt happen to his grand mother .

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