Lamola appoints Makgothi Samuel Thobakgale as acting national commissioner of correctional services

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Samuel Makgothi Thobakgale (right) gets pinned with rank insignia.
Samuel Makgothi Thobakgale (right) gets pinned with rank insignia.
Department of Correctional Services
  • Ronald Lamola appointed a new acting prisons boss to replace Arthur Fraser.
  • Fraser's contract was not renewed.
  • Makgothi Samuel Thobakgale joined the department just over a year ago.


Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola has appointed Makgothi Samuel Thobakgale as acting national commissioner, his department said on Monday.

Thobakgale replaces Arthur Fraser.

It was confirmed earlier this month that Fraser's contract would not be renewed, adding him to the latest in a long list of directors-general to vacate their positions.

Fraser recently made headlines after he revealed that he took the decision to release former president Jacob Zuma on medical parole, even though the advisory board had not approved the release.

Zuma was granted medical parole earlier this month, just under two months after he was sentenced to 15 months in jail for contempt of court.

READ | Inside government's mounting director-general vacancy crisis and what it means

The board concluded that Zuma was in a stable condition, Fraser said at the time.

Thobakgale joined the department just over a year ago as the chief deputy commissioner for incarceration and corrections.

Department spokesperson Chrispin Phiri described him as a "hard working, passionate, insightful and knowledgeable public servant".

He brings 17 years of senior management experience in the sector and more than seven years as accounting officer from diverse provincial departments, including economic development and transport.

"Thobakgale headed the marine and infrastructure programmes and furthermore worked as a deputy director-general in the national Department of Public Works, and among his responsibilities were infrastructure and programme management," said Phiri.

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