Home South African Zuma to skip Tuesday’s court judgment on Billy Downer matter

Zuma to skip Tuesday’s court judgment on Billy Downer matter

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The former president has accused Downer of leaking information about his corruption trial to third and unauthorised parties, including the CIA and some local media houses.

Former president Jacob Zuma opened a criminal case against Billy Downer SC at the Pietermaritzburg police station. Picture: Theo Jeptha/African News Agency (ANA)

JACOB Zuma will not attend Tuesday’s court sitting where the Pietermaritzburg High Court will hand down judgment on whether advocate Billy Downer SC should be removed from the former president’ corruption case.

Zuma wants the court to have the senior prosecutor of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) removed from his case, arguing Downer’s past conduct would compromise his case.

The former head of state has been out on medical parole since September and since his release from prison has made few public appearances.

Zuma has accused Downer of previously leaking information about his corruption trial to third and unauthorised parties, including CIA spies and some local media houses. He also accused Downer of leaking his confidential medical report to a journalist.

On Thursday last week, Zuma upped the ante in his fight against Downer and pressed two criminal charges at the Pietermaritzburg police station.

Now, with most legal experts predicting that the high court will not give Zuma the nod, the Jacob Zuma Foundation, of which he is a patron, said he will not be physically present in court when judge Piet Koen hands down the judgment.

“Dear Media, Just so it’s clear. On the 26th October 21, Judge Koen will be handing down his judgment following the arguments of 21/22 September. So, the 26th October 21 is not a trial date but a judgment date. H.E Prez Zuma is not required to attend, he will send his attorney,” his foundation said in a statement.

The NPA has previously said Zuma’s application will not see the light of the day as most of the arguments he raised during oral arguments were the same that were dismissed by the same court in May 2019, when he wanted the charges against him to be permanently quashed.

Political Bureau

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