Abrahams says NPA to pursue charges against Zuma

This comes after a nine-year-long legal battle and more than R15 million of taxpayers' money spent on legal fees.

FILE: Former President Jacob Zuma.  Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

PRETORIA - Prosecutions boss Shaun Abrahams has announced that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) will reinstate fraud and corruption charges against former President Jacob Zuma.

“On the facts of this matter and in the interests of transparency, the interests of the administration of justice and in the interests of the National Prosecuting Authority, I am of the view that a trial court would be the most appropriate forum for these issues to be ventilated and to be decided upon. After consideration of the matter, I am of the view that there are reasonable prospects of a successful prosecution of Mr Zuma.”

Abrahams says he notified the former president earlier on Friday of his decision.

He explains that Zuma’s representations were unsuccessful.

“Mr Zuma’s representation, broadly speaking, largely relates to allegations of a prosecution characterised by prosecutorial manipulation, impropriety, fair trial abuses, prosecutorial misconduct, deliberate leaking of information to the media and irrational decisions made by various national directors and/or acting national directors of public prosecution.”

Abrahams says Zuma disputes all the allegations against him, and that he lacked the requisite intent to commit the crimes.

Zuma faces 16 charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering related to 783 payments from his former advisor Shabir Shaik.

WATCH: NPA announcement on charges against former President Zuma

This comes after a nine-year-long legal battle and more than R15 million of taxpayers' money spent on legal fees.

The move follows the ruling last year by the Supreme Court of Appeal which set aside the 2009 decision to withdraw the case against the former president.

A team of five senior state prosecutors spent four weeks studying Zuma's reasons to why he should not have his day in court after submitting them at the end of January.

Abrahams announced two weeks ago that he had received a recommendation from the team and was ready to make the announcement.

It's understood more than 200 witnesses have already confirmed their availability to testify if Zuma’s case goes on trial.

Abrahams says the Director of Public Prosecutions in KwaZulu-Natal will facilitate the process for Zuma and his co-accused to appear in court.