Tag Archives: corruption charges

Zuma Zilches Backing Down On Corruption

Jacob Zuma, recently elected leader of the African National Congress, continued insisting graft charges against him stem from his opponents who wish to prevent his election next year to the presidency of South Africa. A trade union official who supports him warned of violence, but Zuma urged his followers not to go in that direction. “No, No, that is exactly what I do not want. I do not want people to die or that shops and cars be set alight. I do not want any violence.” After being charged with corruption last year, he was hit with a new set of indictments in the past few weeks. His trial is set to begin August, 4,2008 and will take place amidst the glare of the world press. Many of his supporters believe his rights are being denied due to the long delay in actually beginning a trial.

Jacob Zuma aroused the anger of President Mbeki who fired him from the vice presidency. The two have clashed over power and it is clear Mbeki does not want Zuma to follow him as president of the nation. However, Zuma does have a right to a quick trial and dragging it out for another years certainly is not in the interests of justice.

Jacob Zuma Zooms Around Corruption Charges

The possibility of “imminent” corruption charges being filed against Jacob Zuma, who was elected head of the African National Congress, raised new issues concerning his bid for the presidency of South Africa. His financial adviser, Schabir Shaik, is already serving a 15 year sentence after being found guilty of taking bribes. Initial corruption charges against Zuma were halted in September, but due to a continuing vigorous investigation, it appears the basis for an indictment now exists. Acting national director of public prosecutions, Mokotedi Mpshe, said, “the investigation is complete. All that we are doing now is to tie the loose ends. The investigation, with the evidence we have now, points to a case that can be taken to court.”

Zuma indicated he wanted his day in court to present his version regarding the allegations of corruption. At a press conference, he stated his willingness to work with outgoing President Thabo Mbeki, despite the acrimonious relationship between the two leaders of the African National Congress. In response to questions about Zimbabwe, Zuma made vague remarks that he continued hoping there would be changes in the collapsed nation ruled by Robert Mugabe, but he opposed sanctions against the country. “We are going to continue with quiet diplomacy.”

It is unusual for a presidential candidate in any nation have to spend time in court responding to charges of corruption. The more intriguing question is what would happen if Zuma was convicted as well as winning the election to the presidency? Could he pardon himself?