ConCourtSowetanLive reports that ninety-two year old liberation struggle activist Nathaniel Mashilo Masemola must receive a special pension, the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) ruled on Tuesday.  

He lost his special pension after a fraud conviction, but received a pardon from former president Jacob Zuma in July 2011.  The ConCourt ordered that the pension be reinstated because of the pardon.  In 1997 Masemola applied for and was awarded a special pension.  However, he was convicted of several counts of fraud and sentenced to five years' imprisonment in 2001.  He served six months.  Masemola continued to draw his special pension until he received a letter from the Special Pensions Appeal Board in 2008 stating that, because he had been convicted of fraud, the Special Pensions Act disqualified him from receiving the remuneration.  His pension was stopped in June 2008.  In a unanimous judgment, the ConCourt said the result of the presidential pardon was that Masemola, for all intents and purposes, and with effect from July 2011, was legally to be treated as a person who had not been convicted of an offence.  The court ordered that the money be paid within 14 days.


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