Quote of the week

It is necessary that the integrity of the electoral process be maintained. Indeed, the acceptance of the election as being free and fair depends upon that integrity. Elections must not only be free and fair but they must be perceived as being free and fair. Even-handedness in dealing with all political parties and candidates is crucial to that integrity and its perception by voters. The Commission must not be placed in a situation where it has to make ad hoc decisions about political parties and candidates who have not complied with the Act. The requirement that documents must be submitted to the local offices of the Commission does not undermine the right to vote and to stand for election. It simply gives effect to that right and underscores the decentralised and local nature of municipal elections.

Ngcobo CJ
Electoral Commission of the Republic of South Africa v Inkatha Freedom Party
14 January 2009

Where to now for Mr Zuma, legally speaking?

Here is my take, published on News24, trying to answer this question. Money qoute:

If Mr Zuma therefore has a strong case to answer (as he clearly has – even Bulelani Ngcuka said so when he declined to prosecute Mr Zuma), it would be irrelevant if that case was only brought to court for political reasons. Mr Zuma’s best bet now is to argue that the case has dragged on so long and the reporting in the media has so tainted the minds of every judge in South Africa that it would be impossible for any judge to hear such a case with an open mind and afford Mr Zuma a fair trial.

That is an extremely high hurdle to overcome and few judges would grant such an application. But Mr Zuma does have another ace up his sleeve. If Parliament confirms the firing of the NDPP, Mr Vusi Pikoli, and if President Motlanthe then appoints, shall we say, a more disciplined member of the ANC as head of the NPA, the “political solution” to his legal troubles might yet be found.

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