Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo finds himself between a rock and a hard place at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.
He must make a judgment next week on whether the Guptas can cross-examine witnesses of the inquiry via a video link, or risk the possibility of them not being involved at all and, therefore, drawing criticism for having a “limping conclusion” to the inquiry. If he does rule in the Guptas’ favour, his powers are limited as he has no jurisdiction outside the country.
Zondo this week accused the Guptas of wanting to enjoy the benefits of South Africa’s legal system without subjecting themselves to its processes.
“They want participation in this commission to be on their terms – either we go to them or use a video link. Do they have a legal reason not to come back to South Africa?” Zondo asked.
The public are tired of hearing how different rules are applied to the Guptas. South Africans are restless.
Zondo needs to be firm in his decision.