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Release Shaik because he is really sick, pleads prisoners' organisation organisation

By unknown | Jan 09, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

The ailing convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik yesterday made a fresh bid for freedom.

Shaik met with a prisoner's rights organisation in what is believed to be an attempt to have him pardoned on the basis of his deteriorating health.

Shaik suffered a mild stroke last year. He is serving 15 years for fraud and corruption. The sentence was handed down last year.

Shaik spent only a few days at the modern Qalakabusha Prison in Empangeni before being transferred to St Augustine's Hospital in Durban because his health was deteriorating.

Derrick Mdluli, provincial chairman of Justice for Prisoners and Detainees Organisation (JPDO), confirmed yesterday that he had met with Shaik in his isolation ward.

"We discussed the possibilities of him receiving a medical parole, which we believe he deserves. We will make recommendations in this regard to prison authorities as well as Correctional Services Minister Ngconde Balfour," said Mdluli.

Mdluli said after a two-hour meeting with Shaik, they agreed he would meet Shaik's lawyer and brothers today or tomorrow to map the way forward.

"We are acting as an independent organisation and are not treating Shaik differently from other prisoners. Those who are HIV-positive and have CD4 counts below 200 are also released," he said.

Mdluli expressed his concern over Shaik's life, saying he was really sick.

"Shaik is a different person. Something should be done."


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