Free­dom with con­di­tions is not free­dom

CityPress - - Voices -

Twenty-seven years in jail should make any per­son yearn for free­dom – even if it comes with con­di­tions. But not Kenny Doshane Mot­samai, a mem­ber of the Aza­nian Peo­ple’s Lib­er­a­tion Army (Apla), the mil­i­tary wing of the Pan African­ist Congress (PAC). Mot­samai is serv­ing two life sen­tences for vi­o­lent crimes com­mit­ted dur­ing the strug­gle. He has cho­sen to stay in jail rather than get day pa­role and be sub­jected to elec­tronic mon­i­tor­ing, among other strict con­di­tions.

The PAC lost an ur­gent high court ap­pli­ca­tion to have its com­rade re­leased from jail un­con­di­tion­ally.

While his lawyers are search­ing for the next le­gal route to take, the PAC and his fam­ily are liv­ing in hope that he will be re­leased.

The party says the le­gal route has failed and it is now time to en­gage on a political so­lu­tion with the gov­ern­ing ANC to en­sure that Mot­samai and pris­on­ers like him are re­leased un­con­di­tion­ally and in­te­grated into the coun­try’s mil­i­tary for­ma­tions.

PAC spokesper­son Ken­neth Mok­gatlhe says: “The con­di­tions [im­posed on Mot­samai’s re­lease] only ap­ply to Apla mem­bers and not other political pris­on­ers. Our mem­bers are re­leased from jail but they leave with crim­i­nal records, which bars them from get­ting jobs once out­side.

“What kind of free­dom [is that] when you [are] de­nied the right to as­so­ciate with who­ever you want to?”

Mot­samai’s part­ner and the mother of one of his two chil­dren, Mantombi Ma­gag­ula, re­mains hope­ful that he will be re­leased. “We were look­ing for­ward to him com­ing home so that he can ex­pe­ri­ence the love of fam­ily, be­ing a hus­band, a father and a grand­fa­ther. But we can’t af­ford the daily trans­port from prison to home [on the day pa­role] since we only sur­vive on my mother’s pen­sion. We hope, though, that he will be freed soon with no con­di­tions.”

– Du­misane Lu­bisi

Kenny Doshane


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