Spy tapes judgment reserved

2016-06-10 14:55
President Jacob Zuma (File)

President Jacob Zuma (File)

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Pretoria- The DA’s seven-year battle to have President Jacob Zuma stand trial on corruption charges will drag on for a bit longer after the High Court in Pretoria on Friday reserved judgment in the matter.

A full bench of judges heard arguments from lawyers for the National Prosecuting Authority, Zuma, and the Democratic Alliance, which initially brought the case to court in 2009.

The NPA and Zuma’s lawyers wanted leave to appeal the court’s ruling on April 29 that the decision to discontinue the prosecution against Zuma on 783 corruption charges should be reviewed and set aside.

At the time, Judge Aubrey Ledwaba said then-NPA head Mokotedi Mpshe acted irrationally after coming under pressure.

Hilton Epstein, for the NPA, said the matter impinged on vital constitutional issues as it concerned Zuma, the NPA, and the National Director of Public Prosecutions.

On Friday, Ledwaba questioned why the two legal teams had not approached the Constitutional Court, after repeatedly stating it was a matter of constitutional importance. Kemp J Kemp, for Zuma said they respected judicial structures.

Epstein said the Constitutional Court did not like appeals being brought directly to it, and appreciated the benefit of having the opinion of the Supreme Court of Appeal.

On April 6, 2009, Mpshe said transcripts of telephone conversations between then-Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy and former NPA boss Bulelani Ngcuka showed political interference in the decision to charge Zuma.

The charges were withdrawn in the High Court in Durban on April 7, 2009.

Kemp argued that the DA had sought relief from the court regarding Mpshe’s decision. They had not sought relief in terms of the reinstating of the charges against Zuma.

Johan de Waal, for the DA, argued that setting aside Mpshe’s decision automatically resulted in the charges against Zuma being reinstated.  

Read more on:    npa  |  da  |  mokotedi mpshe  |  jacob zuma  |  pretoria  |  zuma spy tapes  |  arms deal
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