Comparing Applications Of The Law

Derek Bird (Mercury, January 2) rightly deplores the fact that no punitive action has been taken against minister Gigaba despite having perjured himself in court.

In concluding that political bosses in ANC-ruled South Africa appear to enjoy a different legal treatment from the rest of us, brought to mind how differently political bosses are treated in a First World country like Australia.

Recently Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was fined $250 for failing to wear a life jacket while mooring his dinghy in the shallows of the Parramatta River which flows past his Sydney home. He did not duck and dive in admitting his negligence. Moreover, the officer who wrote out the fine was not intimidated or warded off by a throng of bodyguards. And Turnbull did not resort to appealing the prosecution.

There’s a lesson for the political mandarins in South Africa: practice equality before the law.

Sent into The Mercury and published, 10 January 2018.

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