Despite the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) this week making it clear that President Jacob Zuma will not be allowed to appeal his 15-month prison sentence, that appears not to have deterred his legal team, led by advocate Dali Mpofu.
News24 reports that they intend to file an urgent application in the Pietermaritzburg High Court to stay his arrest, which was meant to happen by this weekend, along with the filing of an urgent application for rescission of the apex court’s judgment.
The publication has also reported that Zuma is likely to be imprisoned at Westville prison in Durban.
Acting Chief Justice Sisi Khampepe has signed a warrant of committal for former president Jacob Zuma. According to the letter, signed on 30 June 2021, Zuma will be remanded to the Westville Correctional Centre in KwaZulu-Natal.https://t.co/d5NePZvv1v pic.twitter.com/7wXO8GQ95F
— Karyn Maughan (@karynmaughan) July 2, 2021
Earlier this year, Zuma had told the ConCourt that he would be willing to become its first prisoner. He also declined an offer from the chief justice to give input on what his punishment should be if found guilty of contempt.
The Jacob Zuma Foundation has, however, now described the ConCourt judgment sentencing the former president to 15 months behind bars as “judicially emotional,” angry and inconsistent with the country’s Constitution.
In a statement late on Wednesday the foundation accused the court of failing to act independently and without bias.
On Tuesday, the court made a landmark ruling and sentenced the country’s former president to 15 months after finding him guilty of contempt of court.
Zuma had refused to abide by its order to return to the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture to testify before it.
The foundation has denied the remarks of Justice Sisi Khampepe, when she handed down judgment, that Zuma had attacked the Constitutional Court.
“The majority judgment makes a spurious claim that our patron attacked the Constitutional Court, which is false,” said foundation spokesperson Mzwanele Manyi.
Manyi described this as a lie and suggested the justices relied on gross slander to convict and sentence Zuma unfairly.
“The characterisation of our patron by the majority panel paints a picture of a very angry panel of judges. We concur with the view of other justices who said the Constitutional Court majority acted contrary to the rule of law.
However, the minority judgment had in fact also found that Zuma had been in contempt, with the only difference being a preference for a suspended prison sentence.
Dali Mpofu is straight up milking these clowns now ????
— Herman Pooe (@hermanAKAsox) July 2, 2021
Zuma was granted five days to hand himself over to the police in Nkandla or Johannesburg, failing which Police Minister Bheki Cele and national police commissioner Khehla Sitole would have to act to arrest him.
Zuma’s supporters have massed at Nkandla, in breach of Covid-19 disaster regulations, to support the former president, with the possibility looming that they will use violence to prevent his arrest.
His children have joined the protest, with the level of angry rhetoric increasing with every day.
We are descendants of Shaka Zulu.
We are first going to deal with these idiots that have been sent by WMC to come and piss in our backyard, and then because you provoked us, we are coming for our land…and we will start in Stellenbosch… pic.twitter.com/VI43gKzxrf
— Dudu Zuma-Sambudla (@DZumaSambudla) July 2, 2021
Compiled by Charles Cilliers