Tazne van Wyk's alleged killer had been 'watching' her school for a week
In the wake of 8-year-old Tazne van Wyk's murder, the Elsies River community is questioning why the violent criminal accused of killing her was released on parole.
Angry protests took place when Moehydien Pangaker appeared in the Goodwood magistrates' court on Friday.
Tazne's body was discovered in a storm water drain in Worcester after Pangaker led police there. He reportedly abducted the youngster when she crossed the road from her Elsies River home to buy something at a shop.
Someone who's been closely involved with the van Wyk family both before and after the gruesome discovery, is regional commissioner for the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), Chris Nissen.
He questions why Pangaker had been let out of prison on parole when he has convictions dating back to 1981 which include murder, culpable homicide and assault.
Nissen says the caretaker at the young girl's school had recounted how he spotted the accused there during a period of a week.
When his photo was shown to the caretaker, the caretaker said 'but I saw this man here for the last week' and the caretaker thought that this man was one of the parents coming to collect their children.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
...there was hope that she will come home alive because there was also the story that people saw her with him [the accused]... but eventually he pointed out the gruesome scene.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
Nissen says although he supports the rehabilitation of prisoners, Pangaker is an example of someone who should not be let back into society.
Apparently his profile on all of these is 27 pages, and certainly a person like this should have never been released. People in that category should stay in until they die in prison.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
A parole system that can allow a person like this to come out and do this horrible deed once again... Clearly we need to have some reform and some review of the parole regulation.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
Nissen says he has raised these concerns with the Department of Correctional Services, but the proper place for discussion is with the parole board and also the ministers concerned.
He believes when it comes to the release of certain categories of prisoners there needs to be proper consultation between stakeholders in the community and the board, which also involves the parolee.
Nissen discusses meetings he had with concerned parents at the end of last year already and emphasizes the importance of proper monitoring of parolees within a community.
They suggested, among others, once a person is released on parole that apart from the victim's family, also the CPF -the community police forum - should be informed and consulted.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
The neighbourhood watches should be informed about the person, the community in which that person is released, depending on the category of that person... particularly around rape, murder, violent crimes... so that they can do monitoring as well.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
Asked about how this infringes on the right of the individual, Nissen had this to say:
There's a gap... This person was on the run for more than a year! He could do whatever he did and continue to do what he did.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
In any case, parolees are being monitored. All that the community is asking is, let us know about who you're releasing, for what they've been released and have you followed proper and due processes... Many times also in correctional services, some of the offenders get converted; they know how to play the rules inside... only to find out it's just a strategy on their side in order to be seen as a model offender and to be released.Chris Nissen, Western Cape commissioner - SAHRC
Nissen says he'll be setting in motion meetings with the parole board and affected communities.
Listen to the conversation on Weekend Breakfast with Africa Melane:
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