Here’s what Squires said:
There was a flurry of excitement this week about how President Jacob Zuma has been accused of being corrupt even though he has never been found guilty of the crime.
This is true. Zuma has never been convicted of corruption, nor has he had the chance to answer to the more than 700 criminal charges, including corruption, racketeering and money laundering. So it could be argued he has only been tried in the court of public opinion. Everyone whose name has been so besmirched in public deserves a chance to prove their innocence. But Zuma and his lawyers have spent hundreds of hours and millions of rands to avoid that opportunity.
Now here is the most important truth, which gives a lie to the lame attempts to portray him as a victim of a conniving media. In May 2005, after nearly half a year in court, his friend and financial adviser Schabir Shaik was convicted of fraud and corruption. Most of these charges related to Shaik’s unsavoury relationship with Zuma. During the trial, in which scores of witnesses testified and volumes of documents were presented before Judge Hilary Squires and his assessors, a picture was painted of a dirty, symbiotic relationship between the two men. It was a picture of how Shaik and his companies paid money to Zuma, and how he did favours for the former while in public office.
In finding Shaik and his entities guilty of corruption, Squires said: “Since all the accused companies were used at one time or another to pay sums of money to Jacob Zuma in contravention of ... the Corruption Act and Accused Number 1 [Shaik] directed them to that end or made payments himself, all the accused are found guilty on the main charge.”
Supreme Court of Appeal judges were also clear about the relationship. “Shaik caused the bribes to be paid to Zuma for the advantage of all the Nkobi companies so that whichever company should require the exercise of Zuma’s influence would receive it. The payments to Zuma, a powerful politician, over a period of more than five years were made calculatingly.”
Zuma apologists will argue that these quotes relate to Shaik and not the president. This is true. What is also true, and was borne out by the judgments, is that dirty money exchanged hands between the two. What is true is that Zuma used his influence to favour Shaik. These are the truths.