JOHANNESBURG – Former President Jacob Zuma has reportedly lost his latest court bid and will now have to pay more than R16 million spent over 14 years on litigation.
The Business Day has reported that the High Court in Pretoria last week dismissed Zuma’s plea for leave to appeal against a finding that he couldn’t use State funds to pay for his defence costs.
Zuma was trying to avoid a trial on corruption charges which first surfaced in 2009.
The former president’s lawyer and the National Prosecuting Authority have not yet been available for comment on Thursday morning.
‘I’M NOT SCARED OF DEMOCRACY’
The former told his supporters he was not scared of democracy, adding he would fight it when it attacked him.
“There is no one who scares me. I wasn’t scared of the Afrikaners when they attacked me. So, I won’t be scared of democracy. When it attacks me, I will face it head-on,” he said.
The former president made the comments outside the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in May where he had been fighting for his case to be dismissed.
He told the court he was a victim of a political conspiracy and that he didn’t have money to finance a corruption trial.
He faced charges of corruption, fraud, racketeering and money laundering related to the controversial multibillion-rand arms deal.
This was not the first time the former president spoke about democracy in less than glowing terms.
While speaking in Parliament in 2017, he raised many eyebrows when he said: “It’s a funny democracy that says punish a person before they make a mistake.”
Zuma said he didn’t know he would struggle fighting for freedom only to continue struggling even after the fall of apartheid.