Ramaphosa Urged to Cut ‘Obscene’ Funding for Zuma Legal Fees

The Democratic Alliance has urged South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to instruct the state attorney to oppose predecessor Jacob Zuma’s application for a permanent stay of prosecution.

“It is unconscionable and unacceptable that the presidency has agreed to pay for Jacob Zuma’s legal costs for his participation in the Zondo Commission [into state capture] on top of the costs for his criminal defense that the State already pays,” said Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane, the Cape Times reported Nov. 25.

“How long will this government make the public pay for Zuma?” Maimane said. “Ramaphosa should cut off this obscene funding immediately, and in fact the president should be opposing Zuma’s application for a permanent stay of prosecution.

“He should instruct the state attorney to oppose Zuma’s application for a stay of prosecution,” he said. “The DA calls on Ramaphosa to do so. Regardless of whether the president rises to the occasion or not, the DA will not let Jacob Zuma get away with corruption. We have instructed our lawyers to begin the process of joining the case as an interested party to oppose Zuma’s application for a permanent stay of prosecution.”

Zuma, who resigned in February, faces 16 charges of corruption, fraud, money laundering and racketeering.

“We will never be able to build ‘One South Africa for All’ so long so as we are governed by presidents who think that they are above the law,” Maimane said. “President Ramaphosa must decide whether his fealty lies with Zuma or the people of South Africa.”

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