PETALING JAYA: More than 10,000 prisoners have been paroled in the last eight years since the system was introduced in Malaysia.
According to the Home Ministry, the first batch involved 64 prisoners on July 26, 2008. As of March 14 this year, 12,550 prisoners have been granted parole.
The parole system, said the ministry's secretary-general Datuk Seri Alwi Ibrahim, was aimed at providing opportunities for prisoners to assimilate into the community after serving part of their sentence in jail.
He added that all convicts with a minimum jail term of one year were eligible to apply for parole except for offences specified in the Fourth Schedule of the Prisons Act, 1995 (Act 537). Among these are:
Section 121 of the Penal Code for waging or attempting to wage war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the Ruler, Governor or Speaker of the State,
Section 194 of the Penal Code for giving false evidence with intent to cause a person to be convicted of an offence which carries the death penalty,
Section 304(a) of the Penal Code for causing death,
Section 376 of the Penal Code for rape, and
Sections 376B, 377B and 377C of the Penal Code, which encompass intercourse against the order of nature.
Alwi issued a statement yesterday after Dr Mohd Khir Toyo's release on parole on Tuesday.
Dr Mohd Khir had served six months of a one-year sentence in prison after he was convicted of corruption over the purchase of two lots of land and a bungalow in Shah Alam for himself and his wife.
The property was sold to them by Ditamas Sdn Bhd, which had dealings with the former Selangor mentri besar, for RM3.5mil (S$1.2 million) in May 2007 even though the company had bought it for RM6.5mil in December 2004.
Last Sept 29, Dr Mohd Khir was sent to prison after the Federal Court upheld the Shah Alam High Court's decision made in December 2011.
Alwi said Dr Mohd Khir received a one-third - or four-month - remission from the Prisons Department and was to serve for eight months until May 29, 2016.
Now, Dr Mohd Khir will undergo the remaining two months out of prison under conditions laid down by the Parole Board, said Alwi.
"Dr Mohd Khir is required to report to the Klang district parole officer, live at the address as stated on the parole order, follow any programme of rehabilitation as provided or directed by a parole officer, not leave the area without permission of the parole officer and not leave the country," he added in the statement.
Meanwhile, Prisons Department director-general Datuk Seri Zulkifli Omar said Dr Mohd Khir's release on parole was according to the same conditions, process and considerations as all other convicts.
"The parolee will still be bound by the remainder of the term of punishment and must comply with the conditions set. It does not mean that the person has complete freedom," he said.
Through a Facebook posting on Tuesday, Dr Mohd Khir, 50, said after six months in prison, the Parole Board had approved for him to undergo the remaining sentence outside prison.
His close friend Ab Jalil Backer said Dr Mohd Khir would be restricted to Shah Alam and Petaling Jaya for these two months and must be home between 7pm and 7am.