Coronavirus brought freedom to some prisoners
As per President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement to release convicts with soft crimes, Sicelo shange was fortunate enough to fit the criteria.
Sicelo shange, 23, was granted a parole for his good behaviour. Due to the pandemic COVID-19, Shange was released back to the community of Imbali, Pietermaritzburg because he maintained a good behaviour throughout his sentence.
After serving time since year 2018, following his arrest in connection with car theft, Shange was sentenced to five years in prison, because of good behaviour, the state considered him for parole.
Ever since Shange’s release he confessed what he feared most was rejection from the society.
“Life inside prison is different from the outside world. I feared to start afresh and meet my daughter whom was born while I was inside. Life seems to be different but I have a very good support system, I am adjusting”, said Shange.
Shange, however stated that some community members are distant towards him. He said he acknowledges what he did was morally wrong and it tainted his image but he’s not the same person he was 2 years ago. Life in prison made him to look at life differently.
He continued saying that his only desire is to change his life in a positive way. He said he wants to be a good version of himself not only for him but for his daughter.
His aunty, Jabulile Shange said she is happy to have him around. “I was hoping to enrol him back to school so he will complete his pending subjects, which he failed to write while he was in matric”, said Shange.
Meanwhile, Thembinkosi Zondi, a trusted and successful member of the community. He said as a former convict, he believes there is life after prison. Skills he learnt in prison contributed to his success he has today.
“Shange deserves a second chance and acceptance,” he said.