Watch live: Jacob Zuma appears at State Capture Inquiry [video]
The new week kicks off with high tensions at the State Capture Inquiry ahead of former president Jacob Zuma’s anticipated return to the hot seat.
Watch live: Jacob Zuma returns to State Capture Inquiry
At the height of the anxiety felt across South Africa’s political realm, is the question, ‘will he honour his threats of defiance‘?
The commission resumes its work at the City of Johannesburg’s old Chamber at 10:00. Zuma is expected to give evidence on certain aspects of state capture for the rest of the week — if he appears.
Tune into the inquiry’s live stream below:
If he appears — what questions will he face?
The build-up to this moment has been dramatic, to say the least. Zuma has, until this point, dodged DCJ Raymond Zondo for over a year.
He has fought the legitimacy of the commission he instituted towards the end of his presidential tenure and, on numerous occasions, accused the judiciary of bias and collusion with dark ‘agents’.
This time, however, his hands are tied. The ruling from the highest court on the land means that Zuma is out of options. It’s either he appears and faces questioning or totally defies the process and deals with a greater consequence – being in contempt of court.
The ConCourt ruling is momentous in the way it was handed down. Not only is Zuma bound to the prescripts of the rule of law, but he also has to categorically substantiate his reasoning for dodging questions that may implicate him in state capture.
Meaning, if a question is put to the former president and he deems it too risky to respond to, Zuma has to provide a substantive reason as to why that question implicates him in any wrongdoing.
What will happen if he doesn’t appear?
Everything stated above is contingent on his appearance. Since his outright defiance, political leaders have held engagements with the former president. The infamous tea party with EFF leaders is one of them.
The ANC NEC also issued a directive to the former president, reminding him that “the Constitution and rule of law are sacrosanct components of our democracy and all people in the country must respect these principles.”
“To allow anything else would lead to anarchy and open the floodgates easily for counter-revolution,” the party’s leadership warned.
The commission has, thus far, not indicated a way forward should Zuma hold true to his threats. In a statement released last week, the inquiry noted that an announcement will be made on further action if the former president doesn’t show up on Monday.