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ConCourt to deliver Zuma impeachment ruling on Friday

Judgment was reserved in September after the EFF approached the court seeking a declaratory order to direct Parliament to consider Jacob Zuma’s conduct.

FILE: President Jacob Zuma. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The Constitutional Court will deliver a ruling on whether Parliament should initiate impeachment proceedings against President Jacob Zuma on Friday.

Judgment was reserved in September after the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) approached the court seeking a declaratory order to direct Parliament to consider Zuma’s conduct and whether he is impeachable following the court’s ruling that he had broken his oath of office and the country’s Constitution.

The application was brought in terms of Section 89 of the Constitution.

In March 2016, the Constitutional Court delivered a damning ruling in which it stated that Zuma had failed to “uphold, defend and respect the Constitution” when he did not adhere to the remedial actions called for by former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela.

This was after more than R200 million of public money was spent in upgrading his Nkandla homestead.

FAVOURABLE JUDGMENT

United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader Bantu Holomisa says the party is looking forward to a favourable judgment when the Constitutional Court hands down its ruling on whether to impeach President Zuma.

The Constitutional Court application brought by the EFF, UDM and Congress of the People (Cope) seeks to compel the Speaker of Parliament, Baleka Mbete, to convene a Committee of Parliament or other independent bodies to investigate President Zuma’s conduct and determine whether he is guilty of breaching his oath of office.

Holomisa says while he remains hopeful for a favourable judgment he does not believe the African National Congress (ANC) Members of Parliament will impeach Zuma.

“Even if we win the court case, the whole thing will hinge on Cyril Ramaphosa’s diluted NEC to give an instruction to Parliament as to whether the inquiry should proceed.”

At the same time, Mbete opposes the application, saying the National Assembly has not failed to carry out its constitutional obligations to hold the president to account, referring to the number of motions of no confidence brought by opposition parties, which have failed.

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