April 14, 2021

South Africa: Zuma Faced with Court Penalty Conundrum

The South African Constitutional Court has directed former president, Jacob Zuma, to suggest his own penalty should he be found guilty of being in contempt of court.

The court order follows the 79-year-old politician’s snubbing of an appearance at the Zondo Commission in February in order to answer corruption charges – which he denies – during his incumbency of the country between 2009 and 2018.

Last month, the commission requested the land’s highest court to sentence Zuma to two years’ imprisonment for his non-participation in the legal process. However, the judgement was withheld in the case.

In another legal setback for Zuma in a separate corruption case, an appeals court recently ruled that his use of state funding was “unlawful, unconstitutional and invalid.” As a result, they dismissed his challenge with total legal costs – running into approximately R15 million – which the state has been ordered to recover.

His legal team has until the end of today, Wednesday 14 April, to file an affidavit with regards to determining his sentence.

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