Former President Jacob Zuma has reason to celebrate, although the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in Bloemfontein has upheld the High Court order which declared his release on medical parole unlawful, he’ll not serve his remaining sentence.
The SCA has set aside the High Court order which declared that the time Zuma spent out on medical parole should not be counted as part of the prison sentence.
The Constitutional Court had handed Zuma a 15-month prison sentence in June last year after he defied its order to appear before the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.
The sentence expired on the seventh of last month.
Handing down the judgment, Justice Tati Makgoba says, “The order of the judgment reads as follows, 1. paragraphs 5 and 6 of the order of the high court are set aside. 2. the appeal is dismissed with costs, 3 the first and second appellants are ordered to pay the costs of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd respondents jointly and severally the one paying the other to be absolved. The costs shall include the two costs of counsel.”
Meanwhile, the J G Zuma Foundation has welcomed the decision of the Supreme Court of Appeal.
The foundation’s spokesperson Mzwanele Manyi says all that matters is that the former President has not been sent back to jail.
Manyi says, “The Foundation welcomes the fact that His Excellency President Zuma is not going to jail. I think it will also help the sentiment in the country and it will create stability for the country because the sentiment on the ground was very negative towards President Zuma going to jail, so we think that is very good, as for the rest of other things, I just think they are for academics for case law, for us a big win is the fact that President Zuma is not going back to jail, that is the bottom line, he is not free to do anything he wants to do he can go around strengthening his party and what a view all the work he wants to do.”
VIDEO: Supreme Court of Appeal dismisses former president Zuma’s medical parole appeal
Additional reporting by Nonkululeko Hlophe and Simphiwe Makhanya.