Zuma accused of attempting to use PMB High Court to help him break the law

Tembeka Ngcukaitobi and Max du Plessis have appealed to Judge Bhekisisa Mnguni to dismiss Zuma's application to stay his 15-month prison term after being guilty of being in contempt of the Constitutional Court.

FILE: Former South African president Jacob Zuma who is facing fraud and corruption charges greets supporters in the gallery of the High Court in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, on 17 May 2021. Picture: Rogan Ward/AFP

PIETERMARITZBURG - Lawyers representing the state capture commission and the Helen Suzman Foundation have accused former President Jacob Zuma of attempting to use the Pietermaritzburg High Court to help him break the law.

Tembeka Ngcukaitobi and Max du Plessis have appealed to Judge Bhekisisa Mnguni to dismiss Zuma's application to stay his 15-month prison term after being guilty of being in contempt of the Constitutional Court.

But Zuma's lawyer, Dali Mpofu, has called on the Pietermaritzburg High Court to rule in Zuma's favour, saying that this was in the interests of justice.

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Ngcukaitobi and Du Plessis have argued that the Pietermaritzburg High Court does not have the requisite jurisdiction to overturn Zuma's prison sentence because it was decided on by the Constitutional Court.

They also said that Zuma knew he had the option to ask the apex court to stay his jail term pending the outcome of his rescission application but chose not to do so.

Ngcukaitobi said that the police had the obligation to ensure that Zuma was behind bars by the end of Wednesday.

"There is no automatic suspension simply because you have instituted a rescission application. The order is manifest, all that needs to be done is to be enforced."

Zuma's lawyer Mpofu said that it was unfair for Zuma to commence a prison term without the conclusion of his rescission application but counsel for the Helen Suzman Foundation argued that the Constitutional Court's decision remained as it had not yet indicated otherwise.

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