Quote of the week

Over the last 150 days we have learned much about the power of the habitual in post-millennial, post-apartheid South Africa. We have heard it in the grumbling, cavilling, quarrelling and grousing about the logic (or lack of) of government decrees. We have also seen it in the defiance of logic among the many bourgeois folks who mistook their entitlement for rights, whether to go running, do yoga on the beach, surf, get takeaway coffees, or to purchase items subjected to restricted trade… We saw it in the contradictory messages relayed by official government channels, in the conflict between some experts advising government, between government officials and such experts, and in the ways in which opposition parties contradicted themselves as they opposed government proclamations.

Angelo Fick
Johannesburg Review of Books
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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