Accountability Now says Fraser should have recused himself from Zuma's parole

Accountability Now’s Paul Hoffman Hoffman said the former leader was already approaching the first term of his 15-month jail sentence – which automatically qualifies him for parole.

FILE: Former South African President Jacob Zuma removes his eyeglasses as he addresses the media at his home in Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal on 4 July 2021. Picture: Emmanuel Croset/AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Accountability Now’s Paul Hoffman said National Commissioner of Correctional Facilities, Arthur Fraser, should have recused himself from dealing with former President Jacob Zuma’s medical parole. but that Zuma’s release itself should not be cause for a big uproar.

Hoffman on Monday said the former leader was already approaching the first term of his 15-month jail sentence, which automatically qualified him for parole.

Zuma, who is said to be terminally ill, was released under section 75(7)(a) of the Correctional Services Act. This empowers the commissioner to place him under parole.

Fraser’s decision comes just as his contract is about to end.

READ: Arthur Fraser asked to explain why Zuma was granted medical parole

The former spy boss who has had a series of damning allegations of corruption linked to him was largely seen as a Zuma man during his time at State Security Agency.

ALSO READ: 'An act of humility': JZ Foundation welcomes release of Zuma on medical parole

Hoffman said Fraser should have allowed his deputy to preside over the matter.

He adds that Parliament should quiz correctional services over Zuma’s release but that the country shouldn't be stuck debating when he should get paroled.

"We live in a country where gender-based violence is rife, where grand corruption is ongoing and where 44.4% of the people in the country do not have jobs. We ought not to spend a great deal of time, effort, money and debate on whether Jacob Zuma should get parole today or in two months time."

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