Judgment reserved as Zuma argues ‘enemy agent’ comment misinterpreted

Derek Hanekom is suing Jacob Zuma for R500,000 after he referred to him as an enemy agent on Twitter.

FILE: Derek Hanekom pictured at the Durban High Court on 23 August 2019. Picture: EWN

PRETORIA - Former President Jacob Zuma has argued that when he called former minister Derek Hanekom an enemy agent he was referring to him being an agent of opposition parties, not the apartheid regime.

Hanekom is suing Zuma for R500,000 after he referred to him as an enemy agent on Twitter.

This was after the African National Congress (ANC) member had admitted that he met with Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) members to discuss how to oust Zuma from the Presidency.

Hanekom said the use of the term ‘agent’ was an attempt to paint him as a conspirator of the former apartheid regime, which was a false claim.

Zuma’s Advocate Muzi Sikhakhane said his client's comment must be correctly interpreted.

“Known enemy agent must be interpreted in the conflict between the ANC and its own adversaries now,” he said.

He said Hanekom must view the tweet in the correct context.

“He [Zuma] has spoken about a plan to oust him as head of state at the Zondo commission. We shouldn’t attach the meaning we want to something that it’s not. This self-serving peace… pulling out of what Mr Zuma said in three days at the Zondo commission to interpret this is unhelpful,” Sikhakhane said.

Hanekom’s council earlier told the court that he had received death threats after Zuma made the comment.

Judgment has been reserved.