Fransman travels to UAE for Prof Karabus case

Friday, March 1, 2013

Pretoria -International Relations and Cooperation Deputy Minister Marius Fransman will travel to the  United Arab Emirates (UAE) to meet with the government  there concerning  the case of Professor Cyril Karabus, says his department.

Karabus, an emeritus professor at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and specialist pediatric oncologist, has been in detention in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates since August 2012 in connection with a case dating back to 2002/2003. He is currently out on bail. 

Professor Karabus appeared in court yesterday, for the 13th time. The unavailability of the medical report of the Higher Medical Committee resulted in a further postponement of the case. The next court date is 20 March.

During his visit to the UAE, Fransman will reiterate the South Africa’s concern regarding the case which it hopes the UAE will expedite and finalise.

Fransman, according to his department, will among others raise South Africa’s concerns regarding the delays in finalising the case due to the delay of the medical report as well as the health of Karabus, which has deteriorated in the nearly seven months since he was arrested in Dubai.

The other matter Dirco said is “the potential of the case to cause damage to the existing good relationship between South Africa and the United Arab Emirates, due to the negative public perceptions in South Africa about the matter.”

During his visit, the deputy minister will pay a courtesy visit to Karabus. Dirco has rendered extensive consular to since his arrest.

Dirco has been working around the clock to pressure the UAE authorities to ensure the matter is finalized.

Dirco Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane has written a letter to her UAE counterpart requesting that the UAE authorities deal with the case in an expeditious and fair manner as it is placing strain on the existing good relations between South Africa and the UAE in the field of medical cooperation.

Furthermore, the UAE Ambassador to South Africa has been summoned twice by the department to express South Africa’s concerns on the issue.

On the side, Fransman met with the family of Karuses  in Cape Town in January where he briefed them on the progress.

Although it is not possible for South Africa to influence or interfere with the judicial process in another sovereign country, Fransman did stress that government will remain seized with the matter till it is concluded. –