Publication: The Witness Issued: Date: 2006-11-28 Reporter: Reporter:

Shaik Fails to File Concourt Notice



The Witness

Date 2006-11-28


Witness Reporter

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The National Prosecuting Authority has no knowledge of Schabir Shaik’s reported efforts to take his case to the Constitutional Court, its spokesman said yesterday.

“You’ll have to check with his lawyers, we don’t know anything about it,” said Makhosini Nkosi, responding to an unconfirmed SABC report that Shaik’s lawyers had notified the NPA about his intention.

Shaik’s lawyer Reeves Parsee earlier refused to confirm or deny the report on the Durban businessman’s bid to have his corruption and fraud convictions overturned.

By close of business yesterday, legal team did not file notification of any legal challenge with the Constitutional Court (Concourt).

Shaik’s appeal was overturned on November 6 and he had 14 days from that date to file papers with the Concourt, which ended yesterday, if he intended to challenge the appeal there. Shaik was jailed for 15 years on charges of corruption and fraud.

His legal team ­ made up of attorney Reeves Parsee, advocates Nirmal Singh, SC, and Hoosen Gani ­ are working around the clock to bring the application, in which they will ask to be condoned for the delay. They are expected to bring the application by December 15.

To avoid the forfeiture of his R33,7 million in assets, a letter was directed to the National Prosecuting Authority, the Asset Forfeiture Unit and the curator appointed by the court to administer the assets, by Reeves advising them of the fact that Shaik’s application to the Concourt will be brought and that the state should not proceed to sell to sell the assets.

Once the application to the Concourt is brought, the forfeiture order will be suspended.

Shaik was still under heavy security guard at the St Augustine’s Hospital in Durban yesterday.

Although hospital management was not available for comment, reliable sources confirmed his arrival at the hospital on Friday afternoon. According to Judge Nathan Erasmus of the Judicial Inspectorate of Prisons who visited Shaik in prison Qalakabusha Correctional Centre in Empangeni, Shaik has been on a “strict medication regime” for an illness that has a five-year history. He added that medical reports and observation notes from doctors facilitated Shaik’s initially furtive transfer from Westville prison to the modern Qalakabusha.

“In terms of the constitution, there is a very clear directive to government to ensure access to medical services to all persons, including offenders,” said Correctional Service’s Manelisi Wolela. He said that if a prison does not have the medication required by an offender, the offender is at liberty to seek treatment elsewhere, but has to pay for private medical treatment.

With acknowledgement to The Witness.

*1       Until and unless there is complete transparency regarding the medical condition, including diagnosis by a state-appointed medical specialist, this matter is highly suspicious.

It has all the hallmarks of a pre-prepared tactic for avoiding the harsh realities of incarceration in whatever way possible.