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South African court orders former president Jacob Zuma back to jail after ruling medical parole was illegal

South African court orders former President Jacob Zuma back to jail after ruling medical parole?was?unlawful

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal ruled on Monday (November 21st) that the decision to release former President Jacob Zuma on early medical parole was “unlawful” and that he should return to prison to complete his sentence for contempt of court. court.

Zuma was sentenced to 15 months in prison last year after ignoring a court order forcing him to testify in a government investigation into widespread corruption during his near-decade as president, a tenure which ended in 2018 when incumbent Cyril Ramaphosa replaced him.

In September 2021, Zuma was released on medical parole after serving a fraction of his sentence. But in December the high court overturned the parole decision and ordered him back to prison.

Zuma appealed the ruling and judgment on Monday, a month after the Department of Corrections declared his prison term over.

“In other words, Mr. Zuma, in law, has not finished serving his sentence. He must return to the correctional center of Escourt to do this, ”we read in the judgment of the Court of Cassation.

The court disputed the department’s assertion that Zuma’s sentence had ended while the appeal was still pending.

He also found that the former National Commissioner of Corrections’ decision to grant Zuma medical parole against the advice of the Medical Parole Advisory Board, an expert body, was unlawful.

“Whatever the conceivable basis, the commissioner’s decision was illegal and unconstitutional. The High Court was right to set it aside,” the judgment said.

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