Zuma due back in ap­peal court soon over dropped charges

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS -

PRES­I­DENT Ja­cob Zuma is ex­pected back in the Supreme Court of Ap­peal (SCA) in the com­ing weeks to back the Na­tional Prose­cut­ing Au­thor­ity’s case to drop charges against him ahead of the elec­tions in 2009.

This comes at a time that Zuma is in his fi­nal months in of­fice as leader of the ANC, and two years be­fore he com­pletes his term as pres­i­dent of the coun­try.

Zuma has been in and out of court over the cor­rup­tion-charges case in the last eight years since then NPA act­ing head Mokotedi Mp­she dropped the charges.

Yes­ter­day, the of­fi­cial op­po­si­tion said it was wait­ing on the SCA to give it a date for oral ar­gu­ment with Zuma.

This fol­lowed the SCA’s rul­ing in Oc­to­ber that Zuma needed to file ex­tra pa­pers and present an oral ar­gu­ment in court.

The pres­i­dent is ap­peal­ing the de­ci­sion of the high court in Pretoria that the NPA should re­in­state the charges against him. Zuma’s spokesper­son Bon­gani Ngqu­lunga could not be reached for com­ment yes­ter­day.

The op­po­si­tion par­ties have been call­ing for Zuma to have his day in court, but the pres­i­dent has fought against the re­in­state­ment of the charges.

The Con­sti­tu­tional Court re­fused to hear an ap­pli­ca­tion by the NPA af­ter the high court said the charges must be re­in­stated.

The high court in Pretoria ruled in Fe­bru­ary last year that the NPA’s de­ci­sion to with­draw charges was ir­ra­tional and must be set aside.

A full bench of the high court heard the ap­pli­ca­tion be­tween Zuma and the op­po­si­tion.

Zuma was fac­ing a chal­lenge within the ANC af­ter some of the mem­bers and vet­er­ans called for him to re­sign. But he re­fused to do so, say­ing he had not done any­thing wrong.

This was af­ter for­mer pub­lic pro­tec­tor Thuli Madon­sela re­leased the state cap­ture re­port.

The pres­i­dent is con­test­ing the re­port, say­ing he was go­ing to court to chal­lenge it.

At the Jan­uary 8 cel­e­bra­tions, he de­scribed An­drew Mlan­geni and Win­nie Madik­izela-Man­dela as the real vet­er­ans of the ANC, and not “the oth­ers”.

The two ANC stal­warts at­tended the cel­e­bra­tions in Vi­lakazi Street, Orlando, last Fri­day where Zuma ad­dressed the crowd.

His sup­port­ers in the ANC have also backed him and said he would com­plete his term as both head of state and leader of the ANC.

The court hear­ing in the SCA will be­gin at a time when fac­tions in the ANC are at each other’s throats on who will suc­ceed him at the party’s con­fer­ence in De­cem­ber.

COURT BATTLE: Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma is ex­pected in the SCA.

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