From ID saga to crowded cell

I felt a great sense of doom on hearing that Kabelo Thibedi, who held a Home Affairs official hostage with a toy gun after having to wait two years for his identity document, has been sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

I felt a great sense of doom on hearing that Kabelo Thibedi, who held a Home Affairs official hostage with a toy gun after having to wait two years for his identity document, has been sentenced to five years' imprisonment.

This comes against a backdrop of us being told that our country's prisons are overcrowded and that some prisoners will have to be released before serving their sentences to ease the overcrowding problem.

It is apparent that we need a more integrated approach from all role players to resolve the problem of overcrowding in the prisons - and that includes magistrates not meting out prison sentences for minor offences.

The anger that drove Thibedi to hold the Home Affairs employee hostage cannot be condoned, but how on good earth will incarceration help him to control his anger?

Thibedi is definitely not a danger to society and perhaps the ideal punishment would rather have been to place him under correctional supervision.

Tebogo Motloung, Mabopane

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