Parole officer cleared Shaik’s lodge stay
Villa was recommended by doctor
CORRUPTION parolee Schabir Shaik was given permission by his parole officer to recuperate in the world’s top luxury lodge following his release from prison last year, the Department of Correctional Services said yesterday.
“He did get permission from his correctional services officer at that time,” said Sonwabo Mbananga, in response to a report in the Mail & Guardian newspaper that Shaik spent three nights at the Thanda Private Game Reserve in KwaZulu-Natal in June. The newspaper reported that three sources had said Shaik stayed at the resort’s “royal suite” – a private villa – with his wife and a small child on June 13, 14 and 15 last year.
Exclusive use of the villa costs R47 500 a night but the report suggested it was possible the stay had been a gift to Shaik.
Mbananga said a medical doc- tor had recommended that staying at the lodge would be good for Shaik’s recuperation. The department had not paid for it.
Shaik was released from prison on the grounds of terminal illness in March.
Various public “Shaik sightings” have upset opposition parties who believe he is receiving political favour.
Mbananga said Shaik had admitted to being out in public twice beyond his parole hours and without informing his parole officer.
Mbananga said these related to being spotted at a garage, and speaking to a journalist.
As a “phase two” prisoner, and not “phase one” as suggested by the DA, he was given a written warning that should he violate his parole conditions again, “he would be re-accommodated at a correctional services facility”.
His going-out hours have also been reduced. Mbananga said that as long as Shaik’s parole offi- cer was informed if he intended venturing out beyond these hours, and per mission was granted, he would be covered.
This applied to all parolees, and those who felt treated unfairly, should lodge a complaint. – Sapa
EXPENSIVE LODGE: Thanda Private Game Reserve is where Shaik spent three nights to recuperate.