Moerane report: political expediency trumps justice

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Moerane report: political expediency trumps justice

Until accountability, transparency and justice is rated more highly than political expediency and there are real consequences for criminals – irrespective of their political or factional allegiance – KZN will remain trapped in a cycle of violence. ‘Corruption will continue to permeate our body politic, and power, position and the licence to loot will be imposed by those whose enforcers empower them through the barrel of the gun.’ In an analysis on the Daily Maverick site, human rights and social justice activist Vanessa Burger says the Moerane Commission of Inquiry’s ‘deafening silence on many critical issues speaks volumes about the ruling party’s real priorities – particularly in KZN’. She adds: ‘Given its inconclusive and very general recommendations, combined with the determination not to seek prosecutions, many witnesses believe that the commission was nothing but a fishing exercise to establish who knew what so that it may be better covered up.’ Burger notes that there will be no official record of exactly what was said or who was implicated. ‘First prize,’ she says, would be for the transcripts to be removed ‘immediately’ to the safekeeping of an impartial legal entity before they can be ‘lost’ or perhaps ‘damaged’. She argues the decision to make no recommendations regarding prosecutions also denies those publicly implicated the means to clear their names. ‘Combined with the simultaneous suppression of the transcripts, however, this actively endangers the lives of everyone who gave evidence. It is in the public interest to know exactly who is implicated and in what.’ Burger says at more than R1m per recommendation, the 13 are very poor value for public money. She says KZN’s many victims and their families have been swindled – not by the Commission – but by the ruling party. ‘The lack of transparency following the handover of the Commission’s report, particularly the suppression of key evidence contained in the transcripts and its potential impact on witnesses and the pursuit of accountability, echoes the repressive and clandestine manoeuvring of the former regime.’

Full analysis on the Daily Maverick site

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