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Remission of sentence does not alter Zuma’s sentence: ConCourt

The Constitutional Court
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The Constitutional Court has found that a remission of sentence does not serve to reduce a sentence.

The Apex court says the effect of a remission is to bring forward a convicted person’s date of release.

Last year, President Cyril Ramaphosa granted former President, Jacob Zuma a remission of sentence citing overcrowding in correctional facilities.

The ConCourt has ruled that Zuma is not eligible to stand for this month’s elections.

It overturned the order of the Electoral Court that found that his sentence and conviction was not a sentence and conviction as envisaged in a section of the constitution

In a unanimous judgment penned by Justice Leona Theron, the court found that the remission of sentence does not retrospectively alter the sentence imposed on Zuma.

Theron says, “This court finds that Section 47(1)(e) focuses on the length of the sentence imposed and not the length of the sentence served. The section uses the words convicted of an offence and sentenced, the effect of a remission of sentence is to bring forward the person’s date of release.”

“Remisssion of sentence concerns the execution of the sentence and does not retrospectively alter the sentence imposed by the court. Thus, for purposes of Section 47(1)(e) remission of sentence is irrelevant,” she adds.

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