Friends in low places

The reportedly terminally ill Schabir Shaik will be living at his palatial home in Durban for the next 15 years, brother Yunis let slip this week.

The reportedly terminally ill Schabir Shaik will be living at his palatial home in Durban for the next 15 years, brother Yunis let slip this week.

Yes, we are referring to the convicted 55-year-old fraudster released on medical parole because three doctors declared he is at death's door.

Medical parole is designed to allow expiring prisoners to die with dignity.

"The Act is very clear. It talks of people who are in the final stages of their terminal illness," said prisons spokesman Manelisi Wolela.

So if brother Yunis is correct, the corrupt Schabir has cheated justice once again.

Prisons boss Ngconde Balfour tells South Africa not to worry. Jacob Zuma's buddy and financial adviser might have spent most of the two years he served of his 15-year sentence in luxury hospital wards, but the esteemed minister has investigated the case and has determined that all is as it should be.

Shaik's return to the bosom of his family, Balfour would have us believe, has nothing to do with the best legal, medical and political help tainted money can buy.

Tell that to the families of the 1400 prisoners who die in our prisons each year because they don't qualify for medical parole.

This stinks and Balfour should immediately refer Shaik's case to the national parole review board.

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