- Make Justice Accessible To All
Crime in South Africa is a product of racist and capitalist oppression, a system that has historically been maintained through the use of violence and denial of rights and deprivation of privileges for the majority of our citizens.
AZAPO believes that the social factors that produce and reproduce it, such as lack of access to education, jobs, decent housing and other social insecurities, need to be urgently addressed and undone, if we are to arrest its wide spread occurrence.
The exorbitant and escalating litigation costs in occupied AZANIA have unfortunately resulted in the denial of access to justice by the Black Majority and the Working Class, leading to human rights violations and excesses that go unreported on a daily basis.
The judicial authorities need to find an urgent mechanism of controlling the escalating costs of legal services, which have adopted a purely profit making and self-enrichment motive, since the dawn of democracy. Unless this is done, justice will be denied to many innocent but poor citizens of our country who will not be able to defend themselves or seek recourse through the courts when they are violated.
The National Legal Aid system will soon collapse under the weight of costs and debt if this system of profit making is not reined in.
- Adopt a Restorative Justice System to Reduce the Rising Prison Population
An AZAPO government will pursue:
- A parole system that will be applied in a fair and unbiased manner to all qualifying offenders, and not only be reserved for the rich as we have witnessed during recent times;
- A Restorative Justice System in lieu of a retributive justice on minor offences and social crimes, so as not to encumber an already bloated correctional system;
- More stringent parole conditions for offenders who have committed violent crimes will be set, to ascertain that time spent in prison is commensurate with the offence committed; and
- Reappraisal of the country’s membership of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to ensure that the Court does not dispense justice in a biased manner, resulting in the non-prosecution of presiding Heads of States from Western countries.
- Implement a Diversionary Justice Programme to Stop Mass Incarceration of Black Youth
The prison population in South Africa is overflowing, and there appears to be a programme of mass incarceration of young Black offenders. The justice system must implement more and better diversionary programmes for young offenders instead of locking them up with hardened criminals.
An AZAPO government will move rapidly to review the jurisprudence, the law and its institutions, as they are still tainted with vestiges of colonialism and racism. These must continually be evaluated for transformation, equity, fairness and redress.
It is self-evident that the law, the Constitution as well as the justice system were devised to protect white minority rights and property. We have witnessed this during the Section 25 Constitutional Review Process, aimed at implementing land repossession.