Zuma files application for Zondo's recusal as chairperson of state capture inquiry - reports

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Former president Jacob Zuma before the Zondo Commission in 2019.
Former president Jacob Zuma before the Zondo Commission in 2019.
Felix Dlangamandla
  • Former president Jacob Zuma has reportedly filed an application for the recusal of Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.
  • The application is said to be 100-pages long.
  • This comes ahead of Zuma's scheduled appearance before the commission next week.

Former president Jacob Zuma has filed an application for the recusal of Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo as the chairperson of the commission of inquiry into state capture, according to reports.

BusinessLive reported that the application filed, just days before Zuma's expected appearance at the commission, was said to be 100-pages long.

Commission secretary, Itumeleng Mosala recently wrote to Zuma's lawyers, Mabuza Attorneys, to ascertain whether the former president would appear before the commission on the set dates next week, between 16 and 20 November.

News24 earlier reported that lawyer Eric Mabuza - in a response to the commission - stated that the former president had not indicated that he planned on defying the summons served on him in October.

"You are free to take any step you deem appropriate. Our clients rights are reserved," he said in the letter seen by News24.

READ: Zuma has not indicated that he plans to defy summons, lawyers tell Zondo commission

The heated exchange included Mosala warning Zuma's attorneys that should they not clarify whether their client would comply with the summons by 12:00 on Thursday, then the commission would assume that Zuma did not intend to comply, TimesLive reported.

Attempts to reach Mabuza were not successful at the time of publication.

Background

Zuma appeared before the Zondo commission in July last year, but had not returned, citing illness or a prior engagement.

Mabuza told News24 earlier this month that he had received a letter from the commission as to whether Zuma would attend. 

"They said if we don't [reply], they will go to the Constitutional Court," Mabuza said at the time.

Last month, Zuma's attorney indicated that he might bring an application for the recusal of Zondo due to a family history between Zondo and Zuma. 

Zondo recently cleared the air about Zuma's claims of a "conflict of interest" and revealed that he had a child with Zuma's sister-in-law about 25 years ago, long before Zuma married the child's aunt, Thobeka Madiba.

News24 sent a query to the commission. Comment would be added once it's received.

- Compiled by Canny Maphanga

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