Economists say the outcome of former President Jacob Zuma’s application for a stay of arrest will have implications for the country’s economy.
Analysts say the investment community will be paying close attention to the outcome of Zuma’s case as the matter is a test of the strength of the country’s constitution and institutions of governance.
Chief Economist at Econometrix Azar Jamine says the African National Congress (ANC) National Executive Committee’s (NEC) decision to come out in defence of the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary is a positive sign for investors.
“Police did not intervene Nkandla which would have resulted in a bloodbath and that could have had a lot worse impact on the economy than things being seen to be giving way to Zuma. I think at the end of the day ratings agencies are going to assess the situation, to determine the extent to which they believe that the constitutional democracy in South Africa has been compromised or not,” says Jamine.
Economic Analyst and Wits Lecturer, Lumkile Mondi says from an investment point of view the outcome of Zuma’s case has little to do with the man himself and more to do with the strength of the country institutions of governance.
“The Zuma case is huge as far as the investment drive is concerned, as far as rule of law is concerned and as far as security of assets is concerned. This is a huge test for South Africans constitution, for the rule of law as well as the continued trust of mobilising invest in South Africa,”says Mondi.
Jacob Zuma | Former president’s stay of arrest hearing, and update from Nkandla:
Meanwhile, Zuma’s legal team has argued in the Pietermaritzburg High Court that the court has jurisdiction to stay his warrant of arrest. Zuma’s rescission application is due to be heard by the Constitutional Court on Monday.
Police Minister Bheki Cele and National Police Commissioner Khehla Sitole have already said – through the State Attorney earlier on Tuesday -that they will not act on orders to arrest former President Jacob Zuma until his legal challenge to his 15-month jail term is finalised.
Advocate Dali Mpofu argued that it does not matter that the contempt case is before the Constitutional Court.
“ As I said earlier, there is no doubt that the act against which the interdict is claimed will be done or is about to be done in your Lordship’s area so your Lordship has jurisdiction on that ground alone,” says Mpofu.
Video: Application for stay of execution of arrest, Former Pres. Jacob Zuma vs State Capture Commission