Barnard v Minister of Justice: the minister’s verdict: Deciding on parole for offenders serving life sentences
Granting parole to offenders serving life sentences has raised questions in public and political discourse. This contribution evaluates the discretion of the minister to decline parole under Section 78(2) of the Correctional Services Amendment Act 25 of 2008 (CSAA). It examines the drafting history of Section 78(2) of the CSAA, evaluates the full extent of the ministerial powers, and reviews its recent application in Barnard v Minister of Justice, Constitutional Development & Correctional Services and Another. It argues that ministerial discretion to refuse parole needs to be re-examined in the wake of that decision, and recommends elements for inclusion in the minister’s decision to refuse parole.