THABAZIMBI – A Special Monitoring was conducted in Thabazimbi Magisterial District on Friday 20 July 2012.
In terms of the Correctional Service Act, Act 111/98, Special Monitoring must be conducted at least four times per year.
During these events, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO’s) and stakeholders in the justice system were invited to accompany correctional officials to determine whether offenders are complying with their conditions as stipulated by court and parole board orders.
The various role players who were invited included SAPS, Justice, Social Development, SASSA, Spiritual Leaders, Attorneys and more.
All stakeholders gathered at the SASSA conference room at 16:30 where Mr Wimpie De Koker, Head Correctional Services Thabazimbi, outlined the purpose of the event to all attendees.
There after the attendants divided into two groups, with Mr Wimpie De Koker leading the one group and Mr JJ Koegebenberg Head Correctional Services Bela-Bela, leading the other group, conducted house and work visits to offenders residing in Thabazimbi town and Regorogile. Each group consisted of Correctional Offices, SAPS members, Social Workers and Spiritual Leaders. During these visits, offenders had the opportunity to raise complaints and requests relating to their sentences. Participants had first hand experience in the rehabilitation process of these offenders. Violations were noted and these offenders were given written instructions to visit the office to give statements regarding their where-abouts when they were visited and not found at home.
Afterwards, the two groups assembled again at the SASSA boardroom where a “post-mortem” was conducted. Mr De Koker then explained that the rehabilitation of offenders is not only Correctional Services’ responsibility, but a societal responsibility, as offenders are not products of Correctional Services, but of the various communities where they come from. Attendants then had the opportunity to raise questions to have clarification regarding any uncertainties. Afterwards some of the attendants congratulated the Correctional services members on their professionalism with which they handled these offenders. They noted that all offenders were treated with dignity and respect.
The next Special Monitoring event is scheduled for 6 and 7 December 2012 and invitations to attend will be handed out during November 2012. The Correctional Services will appreciate it if all stakeholders can be present during the next event.
Correctional Service staff and stakeholders at the Special Monitoring on Friday 20 July 2012, front fltr: CK Motlhabane, MO Ramola, WCC De Koker, PE Hattingh and UK Motlatla. Centre fltr: MF Molapo and KC Motlhose. Back fltr: W Hoffman, L Hoffman, JJ Koegebenberg, GE Radipabe and RP Motlhake.