Tuesday’s (29 June) judgement took many by surprise, not only because it was so stern, but primarily because Zuma had been battling the judicial system for 16 years after he was first formally implicated in corruption.
The historic sentence for the 79-year-old isn’t for graft, but for ignoring a court order that compelled him to testify before an inquiry on the large-scale corruption – or state capture – that took place during his presidency from 2009 to 2018.
The sentence “cannot properly capture the damage that Mr Zuma has done to the dignity and integrity of the judicial system of a democratic and constitutional nation,” said Sisi Khamphephe, the acting chief justice, as he read out the court’s majority judgement, that took just under an hour to deliver.
“He owes this sentence in respect of violating not only this court, nor even just the sanctity of the judiciary, but to the nation
There's more to this story
Get unlimited access to our exclusive journalism and features today. Our award-winning team of correspondents and editors report from over 54 African countries, from Cape Town to Cairo, from Abidjan to Abuja to Addis Ababa. Africa. Unlocked.
Already a a subscriber Sign In