Last week the NPA (National Prosecuting Authority) in South Africa were hopping around with joy having obtained a conviction against Jackie Selebi. Selebi, who was formerly the National Commissioner of the SA Police and head of Interpol had been enjoying a very ‘special’ extended leave at the expense of South African taxpayers while his trial dragged on. The cost of the guilty verdict however, is turning out to be more substantial than money.
The prosecution in the case cheerily brokered deals with the self-confessed murderers of Brett Kebble, the mining magnate. In a flash of negotiating brilliance, the NPA managed to let off every man and his donkey in order to get Selebi on corruption charges. These murderers are now free under the legally binding Section 204 deals – they will not be tried, convicted, or spend a single day behind bars – for crimes which in any sane country would be deemed much more serious than corruption.
Of course, the interesting thing is that Selebi’s appeal may still come through in which case South Africans will be blessed with a happy, bouncing Jackie Selebi in addition to the few murderers and drug dealers that have been set free to roam the streets.
So, where is the justice for the South African public with this verdict?
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