Mr Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa Speech at Johannesburg South Africa on December 15, 2017, before the 54th ANC National Conference.
Wikus de Wet | AFP | Getty Images
South Africa’s Constitutional Court has sentenced former President Jacob Zuma to 15 months in contempt of court.
Zuma was found guilty by the country̵7;s highest court. After he breached the order, he went to trial for corruption centered on his time in office between 2009 and 2018.
The trial, led by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, is investigating high-level corruption during Zuma’s tenure. The 79-year-old former president declined to cooperate. and failed to testify before a tribunal in February.
He is now given five days to show up to the police for his arrest.
Zuma has faced a number of legal issues. No plea plea was made last month in a separate corruption trial that focused on the 1999 arms deal when he was vice president.
He maintained that all allegations were the result of a political witch hunt.
Zuma was ousted in 2018 following internal conflicts between the government-ruled African National Congress (ANC). against the backdrop of public outrage over allegations of corruption and mismanagement of state resources.
Zondo’s hearing comes after an ombudsman’s report called for an investigation into improper contacts between a senior member of Zuma’s former chief executive and three wealthy businessmen – the Gupta brothers – all denied. Offense Guptas fled South Africa when Zuma was evicted.
President Cyril Ramaphosa’s successor has made a concerted effort to eradicate corruption within the government and his own ANC party, creating a rift between his supporters and Zuma loyalists. The state over the past several decades has had a negative impact on the national economy, enterprises and public services.
‘Benefits for the Independence of the Judiciary’
Indigo Ellis, deputy director of strategic risk consultancy Africa Matters, told CNBC on Tuesday: Zuma’s ruling on Tuesday was “Blessings for the independence of the South African judicial process” underscores the flexibility of the judiciary.
“The judges of the Constitutional Court have taken decisive action. He recognized the former president’s ability to persuade his supporters to ignore the rule of law. This sentence almost feels like revenge for his boundless attacks on the judiciary since leaving office in 2018,” Ellis added.
She said Zuma was likely to use all his legal options to avoid serving a prison sentence, but added: “The wording of the verdict is clear. but unable to appeal Despite the pleas from Zuma supporters… we are starting to see a green shot. of the changes foreign investors have been waiting for since the infectious ‘Ramaphoria’ fever has disappeared.”
The ruling did not alleviate pressure on Ramaphosa, however, Ellis suggested that it would have made his work harder by holding on to the idealism at the heart of the ANC.