Lamola: Zuma not receiving any special treatment in jail

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said that the medical assessments being done on Zuma were standard procedure to determine how he would be incarcerated and Zuma would be placed in isolation for the first 14 days in line with COVID-19 regulations.

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola at a media briefing outside the Estcourt Correctional Service facility where former President Jacob Zuma is serving his 15-month sentence. Picture: YouTube screengrab/SABC.

JOHANNESBURG - Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said that former President Jacob Zuma was not receiving any special treatment and Correctional Services officials said that and he was wearing orange overalls at the Escourt Correctional Centre.

Lamola said that the medical assessments being done on Zuma were standard procedure to determine how he would be incarcerated and Zuma would be placed in isolation for the first 14 days in line with COVID-19 regulations.

The minister addressed the media saying that he could not provide proof that Zuma was behind bars because taking pictures or videos of inmates was not allowed but he said that the nation should take his word that Zuma was there.

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"We have processed his stay inside here. he is in this facility. In terms of pictures, we can't do that. We don't it with any other offender."

Minister Lamola said that he met the former president in person.

Lamola and the head of the Escourt Correctional Centre said that Zuma had had his breakfast and medication and he was in high spirits but the question was: will he be wearing orange overalls?

"Of course, of course," was the reply from the Correctional Services officials.

Minister Lamola said that Zuma’s health was being assessed before a decision was made on how he would be incarcerated and he would be eligible for parole when he had served a quarter of his 15-month sentence.

But the outcomes of the processes at the Pietermaritzburg High Court and the Constitutional Court would also determine how long he would remain behind bars.

"We will cross the bridge when we get there. It's a judgment, we don't know what the judgment is going to be, so we will await the judgment and upon the release of the judgment, we'll study the judgment and then it will direct us what to do."

Zuma was taken into custody just before midnight.

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