The ins and outs of SA's parole procedure

The credibility of South Africa's parole system has come under fire once again, after the release of Jub Jub and his co-accused from behind bars.

Hip-hop artist Molemo 'Jub Jub' Maarohanye and accomplice Themba Tshabalala served four of the eight years handed down to them for culpable homicide.

Both men have been granted parole and South Africans have expressed their mixed reactions, questioning the politics versus the merits of the case.

But what exactly is parole, and who qualifies?

Parole allows inmates to leave prison and serve the remainder of their sentence within their community, supervised by the Department of Correctional Services.

Parole expert Prof Lukas Muntingh explains that detainees need to serve at least half of their prison sentence before being considered for parole.

He says that while inmates can be considered for parole, they do not have the inherent right to it.

There's an obligation to be considered for parole, but there is no right to be released.

Prof Lukas Muntingh, Co-founder of Civil Society Prison Reform Initiative (CSPRI)

According to Muntingh, there is no concrete evidence to substantiate claims of political interference in local parole cases.

He advises that parole boards are meant to be independent of the Correctional Services Department, no matter how high profile the case.

Muntingh unpacks the provisions of parole and the processes involved, including the hearings and appeals.

Take a listen:


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