Judge Piet Koen has postponed former president Jacob Zuma’s arms deal corruption trial to January 30, 2023, in the High Court in Pietermaritzburg.
Handing down his order in the matter, Koen said the postponement would give him time to prepare his judgment on his possible recusal to preside over the trial.
He further said the postponement was also due to Zuma’s pending application for leave to appeal in the Constitutional Court against the dismissal of his special plea for the recusal of lead prosecutor, Advocate Billy Downer.
Koen says it is in the interests of justice to postpone the matter .
He says, “Upon careful reflection, I have concluded that the issue of my continued involvement as presiding judge in this trial needs in the interest of justice to be addressed, preliminary to any decisions, referred to in paragraph one above and any further directions. Regarding the resumption of the trial, this conclusion will inevitably necessitate an adjournment of the trial. I appreciate that this agenda will take up time when the trial might otherwise possibly have proceeded, thus resulting in a further delay, which the state has been at pains to prevent. But this delay in the fact that the trial will not be able to proceed during November 2022 are unfortunately inevitable and required in the interest of justice.”
VIDEO: Judge Piet Koen ruling on whether to postpone former president Zuma’s arms deal corruption case:
On Monday, the Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma Foundation Spokesperson Mzwanele Manyi said the National Prosecuting Authority should remove Downer from prosecuting Zuma now that there is a pending private prosecution matter against him.
Manyi elaborates in video below: