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Lamola: Correctional Services Dept committed to fixing parole system

The minister briefed the media after he convened an urgent two-day meeting with high ranking officials following a number of cases in the Western Cape in which parolees were arrested for child murders.

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola tables his budget vote in Parliament on 16 July 2019. Picture: @DOJCD_ZA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola said that the department was embarking on a process to review some parole laws and policies.

Lamola was speaking at the Goodwood Correctional Facility on Wednesday today.

The minister briefed the media after he convened an urgent two-day meeting with high ranking officials following a number of cases in the Western Cape in which parolees were arrested for child murders.

Correctional Services minister Ronald Lamola has admitted there were a number of flaws in the parole system and said that a public engagement process would take place to help the department determine where and how they needed to change and strengthen parole laws and policies.

Lamola said that he was aware that the department was under intense scrutiny by the public following the recent murders of 8-year-old Tazne Van Wyk from Elsies River and 7-year-old Reagan Gertse from Tulbagh whose alleged killers were both out on parole.

He said that his department was committed to urgently filling the cracks within the system.

"Within the department, the data that's been analysed in relation to the parolees that are still on our programme, it is clear that the majority of them comply with their parole conditions but there had been systematic failures in terms of monitoring."

Lamola said that one of the biggest issues was that in many cases, victims were not properly consulted during their convicted attackers' stay behind bars, nor were they consulted with regard to the parole process.