The ex-president of South Africa, Jacob Zuma is facing legal troubles and prison time.foto: wikipedia
Jacob Zuma, the former president of South Africa, has been served with a 15-month prison sentence. This comes after the former president refused to appear in court to discuss his alleged corrupt conduct during his time in power.
South Africa’s Constitutional Court found Jacob Zuma guilty of contempt of court after he refused to cooperate and respond to corruption inquires centered around his mandate. Zuma consequently failed to testify in front of a judicial panel back in February this year.
Judge Sisi Khampepe has given the former president 5 days to hand himself in by his own accord. If he fails to show up within the limited timespan, Zuma will forcefully be arrested by the police.
Judge Khampepe explained the verdict on Tuesday saying:
“This kind of recalcitrance and defiance is unlawful and will be punished. I am left with no option but to commit Mr. Zuma to imprisonment, with the hope that doing so sends an unequivocal message”.
Zuma, who was the ruling president between 2009 and 2018 insists that the charges against him are a part of a political hunt lead by the deputy chief of justice, Raymond Zondo.
Zondo, however, believes that this verdict gives a firm signal to the people of South Africa. Saying that the judicial system does not allow disrespect, where people can choose to disregard summons and court orders with impunity.
Still, Zuma’s legal trouble is far from over. The former ex-president is separately facing 16 charges centered around fraud, graft, and racketeering.