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Zuma’s bid to privately prosecute Billy Downer struck off the roll

Written by on April 17, 2024

Former president Jacob Zuma’s bid to privately prosecute State advocate Billy Downer, SC, was on Wednesday struck from the court roll at the High Court in Pietermaritzburg.

Zuma has gone to court to ask that Downer and journalist Karyn Maughan be privately prosecuted for leaking of his medical records.

Judge Nkosinathi Chili said Zuma would not suffer any prejudice if the matter was struck off the roll pending the finalisation of his appeal on the order delivered by the full bench of the high court last year.

“I make the following order: the private prosecution by Zuma of Downer and Maughan is removed from the roll,” said Chili.

Zuma has also sought to privately prosecute President Cyril Ramaphosa for failing to act against Downer for the leaking of his medical records. That matter was postponed to August, in the High Court in Johannesburg.

Zuma has been in court for the last few years after the National Prosecuting Authority reinstated his corruption charges on the arms deal saga.

The matter has not yet started as it faces a number of legal challenges by Zuma.

This week the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) said Zuma would be on the ballot of the uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) party after the Electoral Court ruled that Zuma was eligible to contest the elections.

This was after an objection was lodged against Zuma after he was sentenced to 15 months in prison by the Constitutional Court for contempt of its order.

But the IEC has appealed the Electoral Court decision to the Constitutional Court.

The law bars anyone who has been sentenced to more than 12 months in prison to stand for elections.

The IEC said it wants clarity from the court on the interpretation of section 47 of the constitution regarding the matter of Zuma.

IOL Politics

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