Zuma’s lawyers argue what he was convicted of was not a crime

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Busi Chimombe

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Lawyers for former president Jacob Zuma argue that the Former President was not convicted of a crime, but for contempt of court which equates to a civil offence and he should therefore be able to stand in the May 29th general elections.

This is one of the arguments contained in the papers lodged this afternoon by Zuma and the MK party at the Electoral Court to appeal the IEC’s decision to bar Zuma from standing.

The papers also argue that Zuma was not given the option to appeal his 15-month sentence and the subsequent remission of his sentence was not taken into account.

Ndlela says that the IEC has not acted in accordance with the rule of law principle.

“The Act the IEC Act exists off the back of the constitution. So, effectively, what that means is that they must draw any decisions that they make off the back of a court outcome of which in this case we would like to believe is making us raise eyebrows about the IEC’s posture. Because what it seems is them having put the cart before the horse in announcing that President Zuma cannot participate in our parliamentary list in parliament. How is that so when they themselves announce that they will take guidance from the courts. We haven’t been to court to deal with this appeal in the first place,” says Ndlela.

2024 Elections | MK to appeal IEC’s decision barring Zuma from standing as candidate:

IEC Chairperson Mosotho Moepya says that the Electoral Commission followed the letter of the Constitution in coming to its decision to remove Former President Jacob Zuma from the MK party list.

The apex law of the land stipulates that any person convicted of an offence and sentenced to more than 12 months imprisonment without the option of a fine is disqualified from standing for elections.

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