This is it.
In Pretoria, Aubrey Ledwaba, the deputy judge president of the North Gauteng High Court, has now taken the decision to postpone acting on the order from the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) should hand South African President Jacob Zuma‘s “spy tapes” over to the Democratic Alliance (DA.)
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This comes a day after it had been declared that the tapes would be handed over. Court reports said that the NPA handed a copy as well as the original of the intercepted phone calls to the court’s registrar who handed the memory stick to the DA leader Helen Zille (pictured). Only Ledwaba’s role, the official handover by the regional judge president, was left to play when he announced his decision to study the SCA’s order for another day.
Zille has been involved in a relatively fruitless five-year legal battle (including six court cases, some of which she won) to have the spy tapes handed over in yet another attempt to discredit Zuma and the ruling African National Congress (ANC). In an interview with reporters outside the court, Zille said that South Africa’s democracy depends on this single corruption case.
According to the Guardian:
“The tapes allegedly reveal collusion between the former head of the now-defunct Scorpions, Leonard McCarthy, and the NPA’s former head Bulelani Ngcuka, to manipulate the prosecutorial process before the ANC’s Polokwane conference in 2007. Zuma was elected ANC president at the conference.”
Those in the loop say that the contents of the tapes are incriminating and it is obvious why the president and his team are so intent on keeping them away from release.
On the day before the ruling, the ANC’s spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa, wrote in a press release, “The African National Congress appeals to the National Prosecuting Authority to comply with the judgement of the Supreme Court of Appeal on the so-called spy tapes as delivered last week.”
Legal experts believe that Zuma has used every measure possible to prevent the release of the tapes; however, last month, the SCA dismissed his application to prevent the release of the tapes to the DA.
The saga revolves around the battle for supreme power within the ANC in 2007. The tapes were reportedly leaked to Zuma’s lawyer, Michael Hulley, who then disclosed their contents to the NPA who charged Zuma with cases of corruption but dropped the charges shortly before the 2009 general elections. That year, the then-acting national director of public prosecutions Mokotedi Mpshe presented transcripts of some of the intercepted communications.
And on August 16,,2013, the High Court ordered that the tapes be handed over to the DA and the drama continues.
Hilarity will continue to ensue. Whoever is in power will abuse it in their own special way and the rest will try to seize power from them.
Nothing new here. Just another cheap front for a political power battle. As usual, a state’s ruling political party has seemingly abused its power and the opposition is using the event as an opportunity for its own gain.
Meanwhile, the population’s emotions are stirred and division grows. Unfortunately, the population is also powerless here and the ruling party will continue to rule regardless of the final findings, even if they are made public.
This is it. This is what we voted for. This is what the heroes fought, sweated, and died for. Stay tuned as the saga unfolds.
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