Zuma must have his day in court, and soon - Save SA

Campaign says criminal justice system cannot afford any further delays

Zuma must have his day in court – and soon

President Jacob Zuma yesterday conceded what most South Africans knew all along – that he should have faced 783 charges of fraud and corruption years ago.

The concession by his legal counsel in yesterday's Supreme Court of Appeal hearing is merely an admission of the injustice caused by then-NPA head Mokotedi Mpshe in 2009.

Mpshe’s decision has allowed eight long years to pass – years during which Zuma has done absolutely nothing to shake off the shadow of corruption, and has further embedded himself and his cronies in a conspiracy of looting.

Zuma is more than familiar with courtrooms – whether it is rape charges, Shabir Sheik’s fraud charges or any of the other cases against him.

But now he has to face the music on the corruption charges. He cannot continue to evade prosecution.

The Save South Africa campaign is concerned, however, at the suggestion by Zuma’s lawyers that the process of building a case should start all over again. If it is left to current National Director of Public Prosecutions Shaun Abrahams to decide what happens next, we fear we may wait forever.

South Africa has absolutely no confidence in Abrahams, for good reason.

He has been a total disappointment ever since he fouled the case against former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, and has done nothing to show that he is prepared to act with integrity – or, for that matter, haste – on any case that involves Zuma. He has sat on case files bulging with evidence about state capture, for example, and failed to prosecute the President’s son, Duduzane Zuma, for his role in state capture -- not to mention the deaths of two people caused by his speeding Porsche.

The criminal justice process cannot afford any further delays. Zuma must face the 783 counts of fraud of corruption, and face them soon. We demand that, once the court has ruled on this latest round of legal jostling, justice must be enforced speedily, fairly and without any further political interference.

Zuma has evaded the dock for too long. He has been President for too long. He must go – if not out of office, then at least to court. 

Statement issued by the Save South Africa campaign, 15 September 2017