President Jacob Zuma has filed papers to the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) to challenge the North Gauteng High Court’s ruling that he should face 783 corruption charges.
The National Prosecuting Authority has also asked for the high court judgment to be set aside.
In a replying affidavit lodged at the SCA on Tuesday, Zuma’s attorney, Michael Hulley, said the Democratic Alliance had “competing” interpretations as to what the law relative to the national director of public prosecution’s (NDPP) power to terminate a prosecution were.
“The DA seems set to avoid this court deciding the boundaries of the NDPPs decision to terminate prosecution,” Hulley said.
In effect, it has been argued by Zuma and his allies that, dating back to 2009, the decision to charge Zuma on counts of corruption was politically biased.
The ongoing furore, dubbed “the spy tapes saga”, relates to a decision in 2009 by then acting national director of public prosecutions Mokotedi Mpshe to discontinue the prosecution of Zuma on the basis that it was irrational.
Mpshe contended that Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy had manipulated the timing as to when to level charges against Zuma.
DA chairperson of the federal executive James Selfe retorted yesterday that the appeal was “borne from considerations not rooted in law”. “The president’s insistence on pursuing a losing case is out of sheer desperation to avoid having his day in court,” Selfe said.
The DA maintained that there were neither reasonable prospects of success, nor any other compelling reasons why the appeal should be heard.