Zuma spy tape appeal next week

By Drum Digital
28 August 2013

An application by President Jacob Zuma for leave to appeal in the so-called spy tapes saga will be heard by the High Court in Johannesburg next week.

An application by President Jacob Zuma for leave to appeal in the so-called spy tapes saga will be heard by the High Court in Johannesburg next week, the DA said on Wednesday.

"The date has been subject to negotiations," said Democratic Alliance federal executive chairman James Selfe. "It was decided yesterday [Tuesday] that the case would be heard in the South Gauteng High Court [in Johannesburg] on the 6 September, which is [a] Friday." The National Prosecuting Authority could not confirm the date and presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj could not be reached for comment. On August 16, the High Court in Pretoria ruled that acting NPA head Nomgcobo Jiba should lodge a copy of the tapes with the registrar of the court within five working days.

This was in response to an application by the DA, which has been battling to obtain the tapes after the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that it had the right of access to them.

The tapes, and transcripts and other documents, relate to a 2009 NPA decision to drop corruption charges against Zuma.

The court gave the NPA until last Friday to produce the tapes, but Zuma's legal team filed notice that he would seek leave to appeal the court ruling.

In court papers, Zuma's lawyers listed several grounds for the appeal.

One was that the court had erred in not finding that the transcripts of the tapes were part of Zuma's representation and therefore did not have to be produced.

"The court [also] erred... in holding that the third respondent [Zuma] was obliged to factually demonstrate that he had an interest in the confidentiality of the 'transcripts'."

According to the application, the appeal could be heard by either a full Bench of the high court, or by the Supreme Court of Appeal.

-by Sapa

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