S.Africa ex-leader Zuma to face corruption trial: court

Former South African president Jacob Zuma is seen on the third day of testimony before the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture that is probing wide-ranging allegations of corruption in government and state-owned companies in Johannesburg, on July 17, 2019. - Former South African president Jacob Zuma on July 16 rebuffed all accusations of wrongdoing on his second day of testimony at an inquiry into corruption under his rule. (Photo by Kim LUDBROOK / POOL / AFP)

South Africa’s scandal-plagued former president Jacob Zuma will face a corruption trial, a court ruled on Friday, dismissing his application for a permanent stay of prosecution.

Zuma, who is accused of taking bribes from French defence company Thales in the 1990s, sought to have the case permanently dropped in March, saying it was politically motivated and that the years of delay would result in an unfair trial.

But the trial is now expected to begin on Tuesday after High Court Judge Bhekisisa Mnguni ruled that Zuma’s “application for the permanent stay is dismissed with costs”.

The judge agreed with the prosecution that parts of Zuma’s arguments to have the case thrown out were “scandalous and or vexatious”. – AFP