Thy Shalt Not Kill
"a man is never undone 'til he be hanged"

The biggest moral issue in South Afrika right now is born out of what African National Congress President Jacob Zuma told the South African Jewish Board of Deputees on Tuesday night (03.05.08). Zuma put the cat amongst the pigeons by suggesting that he can't rule out the possibility of a referendum to determine public opinion on whether the death penalty should be reintroduced.

Okay, as our legal experts have already said that the death penalty goes against the ANC policy position on the issue of crime and punishment, and the Constitution of the country. It's for this simple reason that the death penalty by its very nature is a barbaric practise, backward shotgun solution and tends to achieve results contrary to desired ones.

Otherwise we wouldn't be having so many felonies in Texas and California. We wouldn't be having so much mutiny in Iraq. Botswana would be a model country without murders and other serious crimes. The trick is what fulfilment do you get after someone has been killed?

It's understandable why the ANC ealrier on legislated against the death penalty. It was because under apartheid the only results it produced was the butchery of freedom fighters and political activists while real criminals like Barend Strydom walked free.

However, the situation has changed now, the ANC is in government, crime is escalating and the people are becoming impatient with a government position that says the uneasiness is just perception.

Zuma is right; the people must decide for themselves. However the death penalty can only be feasible if it is made compulsory for all people sentenced to die to exhaust all legal options before they are slaughtered or let off the hook to serve long sentences. Every person found guilty of murder or rape (plus statutory), or making a racist video, or gross mismanagement of public funds, or arms deal corruption, or assault GBH, impregnating a minor, carrying weapons to school, drug dealing, or indecent assault or any capital crimes should automatically have their guilty verdict and sentence heard by the Appeal Court in Bloemfontein and if it upholds it should be automatic that such an appeal will go to the Constitutional Court and if it upholds the verdict and sentence it is then that the convict faces the guillotine.

No expenses should be spared by the state to provide full representation to people sentenced to hang, even if it means getting firebrand Kemp J Kemp or Norman Arendse to represent them.

We judge a country's civilisation by how it treats it prisoners. Such should be a point of departure.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Dear Commentator

Kasiekulture encourages you to leave a comment and sensitize others about it. However due to spammers filling this box with useless rhetoric that has nothing to do with our posts we have now decided that to comment you have to go to our Facebook Page titled THE Kasiekulture BLOG. We will not authorise any comments. Apologies for the inconvenience.