Ailing Zuma To Appear Before Court Virtually

Ailing Zuma To Appear Before Court Virtually
Former president Jacob Zuma

The Office of the Chief Justice has taken a hard line against hospitalised Jacob Zuma with the Monday announcement that the former president will appear before the high court in Pietermaritzburg.

The 79-year-old former president is serving a 15-month prison term for contempt of court at the Estcourt Correctional Centre. 

Zuma was, however, taken to a hospital on Friday last week after a routine check up. He remains hospitalised with an undisclosed condition.

Last week an agreement had been reached with the court for Zuma to attend his graft matter in person on Tuesday – after he objected to a virtual hearing. 

Speculation had been that the matter would not be heard because Zuma was still in hospital.

However, on Monday the Office of the Chief Justice said the matter involving Zuma and the Thales Group will resume in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Tuesday, 10 August 2021. 

“The matter will no longer be heard in open court, and will now be heard virtually,” said the terse statement from the Office of the Chief Justice.

Zuma faces 16 charges of fraud, graft, and racketeering related to the 1999 purchase of fighter jets, and patrol boats. He is jointly charged with Thales, the French company.

Allegations are that Thales paid bribes of half a million rand at a time to Zuma, to ensure their part in any dodgy deals would be swept under the carpet.

Both Zuma, who is represented by Advocate Dali Mpofu, Thales deny the allegations.

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