Former South African President Jacob Zuma has not returned to prison, and officials say this is to reduce overcrowding in South African prisons. This is reported air force.
Zuma, who was sentenced to 15 months in contempt of court, turned himself in to authorities on Friday, August 11.
The 81-year-old man had previously been released on parole for medical reasons, which was ruled illegal by the courts.
South African Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said that the ex-president was given relief due to overcrowding in prisons.
Zuma is one of more than 9,000 “low-risk” prisoners released under a program launched in April to make room in South African prisons, officials said.
Lamola said the decision was made without any political interference and that there was no special treatment for Zuma.
A spokesman for the Department of Prisons told the BBC that South Africa’s prison population is now 47% above the official prison capacity.
South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, has said it will challenge Zuma’s easing, and the ruling African National Congress welcomed the move.
- In June 2021, a South African court sentenced former President Jacob Zuma to 15 months in prison for contempt of court.
- Zuma was the president of South Africa until mid-February 2018, and during his reign, high-profile corruption scandals regularly occurred in South Africa. He was accused of having enriched himself during the construction of a personal residence, having squandered more than half a million dollars from the budget. Then he avoided impeachment, as he was supported by the country’s parliament.
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