Zuma silent on 2009 corruption reports

2014-10-13 21:12
President Jacob Zuma (File, GCIS)

President Jacob Zuma (File, GCIS)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - There has been a veil of silence from the presidency following a number of reports on dropped charges against President Jacob Zuma for alleged corruption in 2009.

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj has yet to respond to e-mailed questions sent to him on Friday and on Monday morning.

Beeld newspaper on Monday reported that Zuma used legal principles from former United States president Richard Nixon's case to argue why corruption charges against him should be dropped.

This was according to an internal National Prosecuting Authority memorandum, written by former senior prosecutor Billy Downer, which the newspaper said it had in its possession.

Zuma was African National Congress president at the time and the national elections were being held in less than two months, where he would be elected president of the country.

Reference to Zuma's representations, made by his attorney Michael Hulley, in the document made it clear that one of his arguments against prosecution was that he would soon be president and should he be prosecuted there might be a "constitutional crisis".

The NPA document reportedly referred to page 78 of Zuma's argument which referred to a case in the US's court of appeal where Nixon argued that a president enjoyed exemption from legal processes and as a result he did not have to hand over recordings to investigators that implicated him.

In response to the argument, Downer reportedly shot back saying the allegations against Zuma were of the "most shocking corruption" which carried heavy penalties.

He argued that Nixon had not been granted the exemption, was threatened with impeachment and so he resigned.

In his memorandum to former NPA head Mokotedi Mpshe, Downer reportedly said that Zuma was not a serving president at the time and if he was elected it would have been done with the full knowledge of himself, the ANC and voters that serious criminal charges against him were pending.

On Friday, the Afrikaans daily reported that the graft case against Zuma carried "utmost gravity", and that he was part of a broad corruption scheme intended to benefit the ANC in perpetuity.

The case against Zuma was strong and would also show that the ruling party was meant to be an "eternal beneficiary" in an "extended scheme of corruption", Downer, who wanted to prosecute Zuma, wrote in a memorandum in 2009.

The memo was addressed to Mpshe, according to the newspaper report. A month later, Mpshe dropped the corruption charges against Zuma.

Mpshe on Friday declined to comment on the report.

Mpshe announced on 6 April 2009, that the charges against Zuma would be dropped because there was a political conspiracy against him.

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  politics

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.