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Zuma meets NPA deadline regarding criminal charges

Shaun Abrahams had asked President Jacob Zuma to submit new representations on why he shouldn't face 783 charges of fraud, money laundering and racketeering.

Former ANC president Jacob Zuma on 18 December 2017. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The National Prosecuting Authority has confirmed that President Jacob Zuma has made his representations to National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) head Shaun Abrahams on why he should not be indicted on charges of fraud and corruption.

Abrahams had asked the president to submit new representations on why he shouldn't face 783 charges of fraud, money laundering and racketeering.

Zuma was given until the end of Wednesday to make his submission and the NPA says he lodged representations with the NDPP at around 9 pm on Wednesday evening.

The Supreme Court of Appeal set aside the 2009 decision by then prosecutions boss Mokotedi Mpshe to withdraw the criminal case against Zuma.

The effect of the judgment is that charges are automatically reinstated but Abrahams had given the president one last chance to argue why he should not have his day in court.

In a letter sent to Zuma’s attorney last year, Abrahams said that the scope for representations was extremely limited because the courts have rejected those already submitted in 2009.

Abrahams also informed Zuma’s legal team that all of the 218 witnesses listed in the original indictment have confirmed their availability to testify in the matter.

While the president asked for the deadline to be extended until the middle of next month, Abrahams gave him until today and warned that no further extensions would be entertained.

The prosecutions boss has stated in legal correspondence that once he has received the representations, he will communicate the process and timeline he intends to follow to the affected parties.

Additional reporting by Barry Bateman.

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