Suzman Foundation, Sanef to apply to be friends of court in Zuma vs Maughan, Downer matter

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The Helen Suzman Foundation and the South African National Editors Forum (Sanef) are expected to make applications to be friends of the court in the matter between former President Jacob Zuma, Advocate Billy Downer and News24 legal journalist Karyn Maughan, at the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Thursday.

Earlier this year, Zuma instituted a private prosecution against Downer for allegedly leaking his medical records to Maughan.

The medical certificate was attached to documents that were handed in to the court, relating to Zuma’s corruption trial.

Zuma has maintained that Downer’s alleged bias impedes his right to a fair trial.

Separate courtroom

In October,  Maughan appeared in a separate courtroom in the High Court in Pietermaritzburg, for her urgent application to interdict Zuma from launching a private prosecution against her.

The News24 legal team approached the KwaZulu-Natal Judge President Isaac Madondo to have both matters heard together.

Editor Adrian Basson said they will continue to fight for Maughan.

“So as News 24, we brought this urgent application to dismiss the prosecution of former President Jacob Zuma against Karyn Maughan. We believe that this is an absolute violation of court processes. He is trying to silence the journalist. We are asking the courts to do always with this matter before it starts.”

VIDEO: Former President Jacob Zuma vs Billy Downer, Kary Maughan case at Pietermaritzburg Court which was heard in October: