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CAPE TOWN - The best gift South Africans could re­ceive this fes­tive sea­son would be an as­sur­ance that 2018 will be bet­ter than 2017‚ that the coun­try is headed for a bet­ter fu­ture‚ and that those re­spon­si­ble for the loot­ing of the state are brought to book.

That’s ac­cord­ing to Demo­cratic Al­liance leader Mmusi Maimane‚ who was ad­dress­ing the party’s North West pro­vin­cial congress on yes­ter­day.

He added that the coun­try now had a rea­son for pre­cisely such news.

“On Thurs­day the dead­line came and went for Ja­cob Zuma to make rep­re­sen­ta­tions to the NPA re­gard­ing his 783 counts of cor­rup­tion‚ fraud‚ money laun­der­ing and rack­e­teer­ing.

“Now there can be no more de­lay­ing. The NPA has to an­nounce the date of his first court ap­pear­ance‚” Maimane as­serted.

Like any charged crim­i­nal‚ Zuma must ap­pear in court to have his charges for­mally put to him‚ he said.

“I am call­ing on [NPA boss] Shaun Abrahams to sched­ule this ini­tial ap­pear­ance to take place be­fore Christ­mas this year. There is no rea­son why this should not hap­pen‚” Maimane added.

“In fact‚ any or­di­nary crim­i­nal would have had their charges pre­sented in court be­fore mak­ing any rep­re­sen­ta­tions to the NPA. Why Ja­cob Zuma should be re­garded as an ex­tra­or­di­nary crim­i­nal still needs to be ex­plained.

“What we do know is that‚ ac­cord­ing to Abrahams‚ all the ev­i­dence is still avail­able for trial‚ and the wit­nesses would have been con­tacted by this week. So we are good to go. Let’s have that court date then‚ and let’s have it within the next three weeks. “South Africans de­serve to head into the new year with some straight an­swers and a prom­ise of swift jus­tice‚” Maimane said.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane.

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