Lucky crim­i­nal

Weekend Witness - - Opinion -

ON one hand Sh­eryl Cwele is ev­ery­thing a suc­cess­ful woman should be: an ed­u­cated, in­de­pen­dent, ca­reer woman from the emerg­ing black mid­dle class. Mar­ried to State Se­cu­rity Min­is­ter Siyabonga Cwele, she had it all — wealth, lux­ury, im­age and in­flu­ence. And when­ever she ap­peared in court she oozed con­fi­dence, daz­zling in her fash­ion­able at­tire ( Week­end Wit­ness, May 7).

On the other hand, she por­trays what is so wrong with the ANC, a party that has lost its moral bear­ing, glo­ri­fy­ing wealth and power in­stead. Cor­rupt, greedy of­fi­cials, not sat­is­fied with their fat pay cheques, want more to fund their lav­ish life­styles. A net salary of R29 000 a month from the Hi­bis­cus Coast Mu­nic­i­pal­ity was not enough for her, so she en­tered the lu­cra­tive drug mar­ket.

But she wasn’t smart enough for the law: a mother of four, she and her ac­com­plice have been con­victed and face the prospect of 12 lonely, mis­er­able years in jail. Still, it’s not as bad as Tessa Beetge, the drug mule she re­cruited, who is serv­ing a seven-year jail term in a Brazil­ian prison. Cwele is ap­peal­ing her con­vic­tion and while she awaits the out­come, she has been sus­pended with full pay. Lucky crim­i­nal. Had she been in the pri­vate sec­tor, she would have been fired im­me­di­ately.

T. MARKANDAN Sil­ver­glen, Chatsworth

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