Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

S.Africa court clears way for Zuma graft prosecution

S.Africa court clears way for Zuma graft prosecution

The Supreme Court of Appeal has upheld the ruling of the Gauteng High Court that the National Prosecuting Authority's decision to drop the corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma was irrational.

This SCA judgement has been seen by many analysts and legal experts as the final note in the eight year long saga, during which the President himself admitted it was a irrational to withdraw the charges of corruption against him.

Handing down judgment on Friday, Justice Leach pointed to a number of ways in which Mpshe's decision was irrational - including the fact that the prosecution team had been excluded from the decision.

Shortly before the 2009 polls, after Zuma had won the contest for the leadership of the ruling African National Congress, Mpshe withdrew 783 charges linked to the multibillion rand 1999 arms deal.

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The opposition Democratic Alliance party had sought in 12 court appearances since 2009 to reactivate the charges over controversial post-apartheid military contracts which have dogged Zuma for much of his time in government.

He said it was hard to understand why the present regime at the NPA believed the decision could be defended. He also conceded that a decision to withdraw charges that was based exclusively on the timing of the indictment was irrational.

At the hearing, Kemp said "what then must happen is that the representations would have to be considered by the NPA, because they have never been".

Advocate Kemp J Kemp, counsel for Zuma, made the same concession.

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