Presidency slams Cope for 'opportunistic' statement on Zuma

President Jacob Zuma (File, Beeld)
President Jacob Zuma (File, Beeld)

Johannesburg – The Presidency said it rejected the "misleading and opportunistic" statement issued by Cope in relation to President Jacob Zuma and AbaThembu King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo.

Cope said it wished to remind Zuma that nobody was above the law. It called on Zuma to stop manipulating and damaging the criminal justice system in order to avoid having his day in court.

"He must answer all of the 700 charges he has tried to wriggle out of through abuse of power and the willing collusion of the whole of the ANC, SACP and Cosatu," Cope said.

The Presidency dismissed Cope’s allegations, saying they were a "complete lie and a serious fabrication".

"There are no criminal charges pending against Zuma. The charges against the president were withdrawn in 2009 by the then-acting national director of public prosecutions.

"Saying the president must answer to some non-existent charges before court in light of the King Dalindyebo matter is opportunistic and mischievous," the Presidency said.

The Presidency said Zuma was co-operating with the courts in a case that was currently pending. The matter relates to the DA calling for a review of the decision of the acting national director of public prosecutions to withdraw charges against the president.

Dalindyebo began serving his 12-year jail term for assault, kidnapping, and arson on Wednesday.

In 2009, Dalindyebo was sentenced to 15 years in prison for culpable homicide, assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm, arson, and kidnapping. He was granted bail pending the outcome of his appeal to the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA). In October, the SCA set aside his culpable homicide conviction and reduced his sentence to 12 years.

His crimes involved the treatment he meted out to some of his subjects in 1995 and 1996.

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