UNITED DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT

MEDIA RELEASE

STATE WITNESSES IN JAILS NOT THE SOLUTION

STATEMENT ISSUED BY ANNELIZÉ VAN WYK, MP
UDM SPOKESPERSON FOR SAFETY AND SECURITY

The suggestion to place state witnesses in prisons is ridiculous and absurd. The state witness protection programme is inadequate and needs an overhaul.

The alarming rate at which state witnesses are being brutally murdered is an indication for all and sundry that state witnesses are in urgent need of proper protection and that the current programme is a failure. It is a far cry from any logical option to even consider using prisons as places of safety. Many prison inmates are killed, raped and assaulted. To subject witnesses and their families to such conditions would seriously hamper their willingness to assist the authorities. In turn this would have serious, negative implications for the proper administration of justice, especially cases of organised crime.

The UDM calls upon the Minister to urgently implement solutions that will favour the encouragement of citizens to come forth and assist in upholding the law and justice in our country and not to embark upon the ridiculous.

Enquiries:
Annelizé van Wyk, MP
UDM Spokesperson for Safety and Security
082 557 4184

Cape Town
09 July 2001.