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Zuma's lawyers producing another stumbling block to postpone corruption trial?

17 May 2021 1:30 PM
Tags:
Jacob Zuma
ANC
jacob zuma corruption trial

Zuma's legal team says it wants to bring a special plea to remove NPA Advocate Billy Downer from the prosecution.

The corruption trial against former president Jacob Zuma was set to being on Monday in the Pietermaritzburg High Court.

Jacob Zuma's legal team has requested the trial be postponed by a week. His lawyers are looking at bringing a Section 106 (1h) plea to have the prosecutor removed, in this case, Advocate Billy Downer of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

Despite Zuma's lawyers saying he wants the trial to start, this is another delay in the process, suggests NPA spokesperson Sipho Ngwema talking to Mandy Wiener on The Midday Report.

Our witness was there. We were ready to start with the trial. We had resolved last time with the defence all pre-trial issues and today was supposed to see the trial start in earnest.

Sipho Ngwema, Spokesperson - National Prosecuting Authority

However, they brought up a surprise.

Sipho Ngwema, Spokesperson - National Prosecuting Authority

Ngwema says the NPA had had some indication that the defence may bring an application.

They did call Billy to say that they are going to bring an application for his refusal, but this morning they had no papers. They said they will bring a special plea under Section 105.

Sipho Ngwema, Spokesperson - National Prosecuting Authority

In terms of the faction that they are fighting, they are saying Billy has no authority, when in fact, Billy has been working on this case for the past 20 years. They have been dealing with him, they have been interacting with him,

Sipho Ngwema, Spokesperson - National Prosecuting Authority

We want to see the reasons they are going to bring that Billy does not have the authority.

Sipho Ngwema, Spokesperson - National Prosecuting Authority

As a member of the NPA, Downer is authorised to act as a prosecutor, says Ngwema.

Judge Piet Koen has granted Zuma’s new lawyers time to file his plea. The trial has been postponed until the 26 May in order for a plea to be recorded.

Nkosikhona Duma, KwaZulu-Natal correspondent for Eyewitness News says after proceedings wrapped up people outside the court showed their support for Zuma.

Across the road a mini rally is being held in support of the former president jacob Zuma. Many senior members of the NEC are also here and leaders of KZN ANC.

Nkosikhona Duma, Reporter - EWN

Listen to the interviews below including the words of Advocate Billy Downer:




17 May 2021 1:30 PM
Tags:
Jacob Zuma
ANC
jacob zuma corruption trial

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