November 25, 2020

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‘I would rather face jail than be bullied by Zondo’ – Jacob Zuma hits back

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Almost 24 hours after dramatically storming out of the State Capture Inquiry, Jacob Zuma has lashed out at DCJ Raymond Zondo and the rest of the panel. Issuing a statement through his Foundation, the 78-year has branded the Commission as an ‘illegitimate process’ that is being ‘irregularly assisted’ by other senior advocates.

State Capture Inquiry latest

Things got off to a rocky start earlier this week, when lawyers were prevented from grilling uBaba due to a recusal application. Zuma’s counsel had asked Zondo to step down from the case, arguing that he had a ‘conflict of interest and was acting ‘too emotionally’ to continue. This bid was rejected on Thursday, sparking scenes of chaos in the chambers.

Zuma subsequently hot-footed his way out of proceedings. The move left Zondo dumbfounded and opened the former president up to a possible course of litigation: A failure to arrive at a Commission during the agreed-upon dates is classed as a criminal offence, with a six-month prison term identified as the toughest possible punishment.

Jacob Zuma would ‘rather face prison than Zondo’

But jail time does not seem to be fazing Msholozi. In fact, he stated he’d prefer a stint in the cells to reappearing in front of the State Capture Commission. The belligerent response has thrown all caution to the wind:

“We are disappointed that Raymond Zondo missed the opportunity [to recuse himself] this week. We stand by Jacob Zuma and commend him for his firm stance of walking away from the State Capture Inquiry – which has been a comedy of errors, floundering from one error to the next.”

“We also commend Mr. Zuma for risking it all, in order not to legitimise an irregular process disguised as a legitimate Commission. President Zuma assures us that he would rather face jail than allow himself to be bullied by an irregular, manipulated, and unlawful process. They can spin what happened all they like – but their evil intentions were thwarted.”

Jacob Zuma Foundation

  • You can read the full statement here: