Jailing me was unconstitutional: Zuma speaks for first time since his release

He was speaking at a prayer service in Durban on Thursday to welcome him home.

FILE: FILE: Former President Jacob Zuma. Picture: Abigail Javier/Eyewitness News.

JOHANNESSBURG - Former President Jacob Zuma said his imprisonment was the equivalent of what happened under apartheid where people were jailed without trial.

He was speaking at a prayer service in Durban on Thursday to welcome him home.

Zuma said his imprisonment was unconstitutional: “It is this State that has imprisoned me for contempt of court without trial. Something has gone terribly wrong.”

In Zuma's case, a trial is not required for him to be guilty in contempt of court. Zuma was guilty of disobedience of a court order, as the ConCourt had ordered him to return to the state capture commission to complete his testimony.

Zuma was released on medical parole after being sentenced to 15 months imprisonment for refusing to testify before the state capture commission.

He said the Constitution was being used to walk over the rights of many: “Law, under the new Constitution, is increasingly being experienced as advancing the exclusive interest of the rich and powerful.”

The former president then claimed that the Constitution was being abused but failed to provide any evidence of this.

“We are headed towards a constitutional crisis that could easily descend into severe social instability.”

He continued to argue that the Constitution was being abused: “Today, the Constitution and rule of law appears to be used as weapons to avenge oneself against political opponents.”

Again, he provided no evidence to support his claim.

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