Families seek accountability from criminal justice officers

A Westville Correctional Centre inmate died recently after he was allegedly beaten by warders. (Photo: Independent Newspapers)

A Westville Correctional Centre inmate died recently after he was allegedly beaten by warders. (Photo: Independent Newspapers)

Brother of slain remand detainee wants warders held accountable

Eight warders who allegedly beat and killed a Durban remand detainee have been suspended, but not arrested, The Star reports. The warders are said to have assaulted Bongani Makhubu, 27, after he had stabbed two fellow inmates during breakfast.  His brother believes that the warders should have responded differently to Makhubu’s actions. “If he did something wrong, they should have locked him up or not allowed him visitors for a few months; they cannot just kill people,” he said.

Family to sue state over police dragging death

Another victim of alleged violence by criminal justice officials, taxi driver Emidio Macia was buried in Mozambique during the weekend. Macia, 27, was found dead in the cells at Daveyton Police Station after being handcuffed to and dragged behind a police vehicle almost two weeks ago. The Sowetan reports that Macia’s family plans to institute civil proceedings against the state. Read more.

Over 60 00 serving time outside prison

The Minister of Correctional Services, Sbu Ndebele, has said 48 323 people are out on parole, and 14 917 are probationers (convicted offenders serving non-custodial sentences). The Times reports that Ndebele has called on the public to help to reintegrate these people into society.  Read more. 

Police said to arrest many for petty offences

Many of the 1.6 million arrests made by the SAPS during the 2011/2012 financial year were for offences including loitering, urinating and drinking in public and being in the country illegally, according to The Star. But researchers like Lizette Lancaster of the Institute for Security Studies say arresting petty criminals is unlikely to bring down the country’s crime rate and may instead cause those arrested to become defiant towards the police. Lancaster also says relations between communities and the police may be damaged, which may hamper intelligence gathering.

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About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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