Zondo goes to Constitutional Court to force Jacob Zuma to testify on state capture

03 December 2020 - 17:47 By Franny Rabkin
Former president Jacob Zuma is to be summoned to give evidence to the Zondo commission in January and February next year. The commission has asked the ConCourt to order Zuma to appear. File picture.
Former president Jacob Zuma is to be summoned to give evidence to the Zondo commission in January and February next year. The commission has asked the ConCourt to order Zuma to appear. File picture.
Image: Veli Nhlapo

The state capture inquiry has filed an urgent application to the Constitutional Court, asking it to order former president Jacob Zuma to comply with a new summons to appear and give evidence in January and February next year.

“This application has arisen because, though Mr Zuma attended the commission’s proceedings on the 16th, 17th and in the morning of November 19 2020, he left the proceedings of the commission without the chairperson’s permission on November 19 ... in defiance of the summons issued to him,” said commission secretary Prof Itumeleng Mosala in an affidavit.

Mosala has asked the highest court to order that Zuma shall answer any questions put to him — “subject to the privilege against self-incrimination, and may not rely on the right to remain silent”, says the notice of motion.

He asks the court to declare that Zuma is constitutionally obliged to appear before it and to comply with any summons it has issued.

“I do not make this application lightly,” said Mosala.

He said even though the Constitutional Court was ordinarily the court last to be approached, rather than first, “I believe that only this court can grant effective and adequate relief ... in the grave situation that has arisen.”

The application has been made on the basis that the highest court has exclusive jurisdiction to hear the case or, alternatively, that there are exceptional circumstances warranting approaching it directly.

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