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Hanekom welcomes high court ruling on Zuma spy tweet

The High Court in Durban on Friday ordered Jacob Zuma to delete the offending tweet and publicly apologise to Derek Hanekom.

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

JOHANNESBURG – The African National Congress national executive committee member Derek Hanekom has welcomed the ruling that former President Jacob Zuma's statement that he is an enemy agent amounts to defamation.

The High Court in Durban on Friday ordered Zuma to delete the offending tweet and publicly apologise to Hanekom.

The former president has however filed an application for leave to appeal.

Judge Dhaya Pillay said in her ruling that as a former chief of intelligence and an elder, the former president’s comments carry weight, and on matters of state security, his opinions count.

She said when Zuma refers to a political activist as a known enemy agent, reasonable readers will understand him to be referring to an apartheid spy.

Pillay added that false narratives about southern African history cannot be left unchecked.

Hanekom said the ruling follows a week of violence in the country, fueled by misinformation and disinformation.
He says everyone must stand united against the peddling of lies and instilling fear.