Pretoria – The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) on Sunday confirmed that former president Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma has been placed on medical parole.
"Section 75(7)(a) of the Correctional Services Act 111 of 1998, affords the National Commissioner a responsibility to place under correctional supervision or day parole, or grant parole or medical parole to a sentenced offender serving a sentence of incarceration for 24 months or less," said DCS national spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo.
"The National Commissioner is also in terms of Section 52, empowered to prescribe conditions of parole."
He said medical parole’s eligibility for Zuma was "impelled by a medical report" received by the Department of Correctional Services.
"Apart from being terminally ill and physically incapacitated, inmates suffering from an illness that severely limits their daily activity or self-care can also be considered for medical parole," Nxumalo said.
He said the risk of re-offending of released inmates must also be low and there must be appropriate arrangements for the inmate’s supervision, care and treatment within the community to which the inmate is to be released to.
"Medical parole placement for Mr Zuma means that he will complete the remainder of the sentence in the system of community corrections, whereby he must comply with specific set of conditions and will be subjected to supervision until his sentence expires," said Nxumalo.
He said medical parole can only be revoked if an offender does not comply with the placement conditions.
"We want to reiterate that placement on medical parole is an option available to all sentenced offenders provided they meet all the requirements," said Nxumalo.
"We appeal to all South Africans to afford Mr Zuma dignity as he continues to receive medical treatment."
Zuma, 79, was admitted to hospital in August. He is serving a 15-month jail sentence for contempt of court over his refusal to abide by subpoenas to make a further appearance at the Zondo commission into state capture.
Zuma’s corruption case has been adjourned until September 9 because of his ill health, which required his hospitalisation outside the Estcourt Correctional Centre.
African News Agency (ANA)