The killer of former First Lady, Marike de Klerk, claims he is being overlooked for parole as the former President’s family is not interested in meeting with him.
The victim-offender dialogue or VOD is part of the requirements for parole.
Luyanda Mboniswa, who was 21 at the time, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the 2001 killing. He is serving a life sentence for the murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances and has now been in jail for 18 years.
He broke into the former First Lady’s beachfront apartment at Dolphin Beach in Tableview. Mboniswa had been working as a security guard at the premises. The then 64-year-old Mrs de Klerk was stabbed and throttled.
Mboniswa says he has twice applied for parole, but feels the report of the victim-offender dialogue is holding him back. Chairperson of the National Council for Correctional Services, Judge Siraj Desai, says parole is not a right, but a privilege.
“What I do know about this offender, he was dealt with previously by my predecessor. He’s scheduled to be heard by us during the course of this year, we will apply our minds to it and we will make a recommendation, but a final decision is not made by us. That recommendation is referred to the minister who makes the final decision.”
Desai says Mboniswa’s name is on the list for the next National Council meeting, which will be scheduled for later this year. He’s currently doing time at the Drakenstein Correctional Centre near Paarl.
Regional Commissioner for Correctional Services in the Western Cape, Delekile Class, says while the dialogue with the family is necessary, it is not the only criteria for parole.
“The department did meet with the son of Mrs Marike de Klerk, I think it’s Willem de Klerk in October last year. He indicated that he would prefer that we talk to his legal representative and declined to participate in victim-offender dialogue, however, because the offender was due to appear his profile was done and has undergone all necessary programmes that he should have undergone,” he says.
Mboniswa stole a wristwatch, a cellphone and two torches. The former First Lady had lost her right to state protection following her divorce from former President FW de Klerk in 1998, after 39 years of marriage. The De Klerk Foundation has been approached for comment but is yet to respond.