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S v Zuma and Another (CCD 30/2018P) [2023] ZAKZPHC 10


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S v Zuma and Another (CCD 30/2018P) [2023] ZAKZPHC 10

Legal gavel

3rd February 2023


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Click here to read the full judgment on Saflii

1]          This ruling deals with the issue of my recusal as presiding judge in the above trial. The issue arises specifically in the context of the recent private prosecution of the lead prosecutor appointed by the State, Mr Downer SC, at the instance of the first accused, Mr Zuma and Mr Zuma’s request that I should remove Mr Downer as prosecutor, in the light of findings and comments I had made in previous judgments in this trial, particularly those concerning the merits of the charges on which the private prosecution is based. The issue was raised formally at the last hearing on 17 October 2022.



[2]          On 26 October 2021 I delivered a judgment (the main judgment[1]) dismissing the special plea raised by Mr Zuma in terms of s 106(1)(h) of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977 (the CPA) that Mr Downer lacked the title to prosecute. On 16 February 2022 I delivered a judgment (the leave to appeal judgment) refusing Mr Zuma leave to appeal the main judgment. Mr Zuma thereafter petitioned the Supreme Court of Appeal for leave to appeal the main judgment (the petition). The petition was refused with costs on 30 March 2022. Mr Zuma thereafter filed an application, pursuant to s 17(2)(f) of the Superior Courts Act 10 of 2013 (the Superior Courts Act), for the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal to reconsider the refusal of the petition (the reconsideration application). The reconsideration application was refused on 20 May 2022. It was followed by Mr Zuma then filing an application to the Constitutional Court for leave to appeal the decision of the President of the Supreme Court of Appeal in the reconsideration application.




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