Jacob Zuma set to be sentenced Tuesday




FILE - In this file photo dated Tuesday July 16, 2019, former South African president Jacob Zuma looks on at the state commission probing allegations of corruption in government, in Johannesburg. South African media say the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Friday Nov. 29, 2019, has dismissed Zuma’s attempt to appeal a ruling that cleared the way for him to be prosecuted for corruption.(AP Photo/FILE)

Durban – The Constitutional Court’s long-awaited judgment on former president Jacob Zuma’s defiance of two summons the Zondo commission issued is due to take place on Tuesday.

In a note to the media, the Constitutional Court said the judgment would be handed down at 10am.

Only a limited number of people, including the media, would be allowed into the courtroom.

“Judgment on Tuesday, 29 June at 10h00: Is former President Jacob Zuma guilty of contempt of court and, if so, what is the appropriate sanction? (Secretary of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture v JG Zuma and Others). Please note that court attendance at this hand down will be limited to 20 members of the public, including the media,” the court said.

The judgment is a culmination of a court battle between Zuma and the Zondo commission which is probing allegations of state capture during his nine-year presidency and the judiciary.

At some point, in anticipation of the sentencing, the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association sent a battalion to guard Zuma’s home in Nkandla and thwart efforts to arrest him.

Although the battalion was eventually pulled, some members remain stationed outside the home even today.

When the commission dashed to court, Zuma issued several statements, saying he had lost trust in the judiciary and had taken a political position not to take part in the matter because the judiciary was engaged in political battles against him.

When the matter was heard on March 25 this year, advocate Tembeka Ngcukayitobi, acting on behalf of the commission, asked the court to hand down a two-year sentence, arguing that Zuma has made serious allegations against the judiciary without any evidence to back up his claims.

While awaiting the court’s ruling, one of Zuma’s sons, Edward Zuma, said it would be bizarre if the Constitutional Court handed down a custodial sentence as it did not deal with criminal matters.

He said they would deal with the matter when the sentence was handed down.