South Africa: Yet Another Jacob Zuma Fiasco…

The hottest topic circulating the South African blogosphere is none other than the infamous Jacob Zuma (yes, him again).  This time, the ANC President is making headlines not for any more embarrassing or inappropriate conduct but for clearly dodging all of the charges (783 of them) made against him in an eight-year long running fraud case against him.

This week Monday, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) dropped all charges against him citing taped evidence, obtained by Zuma's lawyers, of a ‘conspiracy’ against Mr. Zuma. Evidence which should have never made the light of day in a public forum, which begs the question of how they got there in the first place…

Here's the buzz in the blogosphere…

Subversive Africana: The Luck of Jacob Zuma:

Well gosh, he dunnit again: he got off. I am reminded of a piece of liturgy…wait (rifles through her library looking for the relevant Book)…here it is:

‛They were bound to clear you,’ said Hermione, who had looked positively faint with anxiety when Harry had entered the kitchen and was now holding a shaking hand over her eyes, ‛there was no case against you, none at all.’

‘Everyone seems quite relieved, though, considering you all knew I’d get off,’ said Harry, smiling.

Mrs Weasley was wiping her face on her apron, and Fred, George and Ginny were doing a kind of war dance to a chant that went: ‛He got off, he got off, he got off…’

The difference here is, I wouldn’t mind Harry Potter for president. Jacob Zuma…well, no shining endorsement there, the man mispronounces “divisive”. I see this as an omen.

I watched both the National Prosecuting Authority’s announcement, and the Zuma press conference the day after that announcement, live, because hey, I have no life, and I had a few thoughts on the long-winded speeches that I’ll share with you, the lucky and beautific reader of this blog!

They are: if the (acting) head of the NPA (I forget his name) uses the words “process”, “abusive” or the phrase “offends one’s sense of justice” one more time, we’ll have to shoot him. Those jingles are still reverberating in my head, and I wasn’t even paying close attention throughout; I was reading, aloud and with an unexpected flair, about Shylock and his pound of flesh, too, because speeches are boring mahn.

Newswatch Blog:NIA deputy chief leaked recordings:

The National Intelligence Agency’s (NIA) deputy head, Arthur Fraser, leaked secret recordings to ANC leader Jacob Zuma’s lawyers — evidence that ultimately halted his prosecution, according to a report today.

Quoting from three independent sources, the weekly Mail&Guardian said Fraser was once closely linked to former president Thabo Mbeki but had “changed his political tune some time ago”.

“The office of the Inspector General (of Intelligence) is investigating it,” NIA spokeswoman Lorna Daniels told Sapa.

“We strongly deny it. We have no further comment,” she added.

Based on information obtained from the recordings, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) this week announced it would halt the prosecution of Zuma, who was facing fraud and corruption charges.

The charges were dropped by the High Court in Durban on Tuesday.

The tapes are recordings of phone conversations between former NPA head Bulelani Ngcuka and former Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy, discussing, among other things, the timing of an announcement to re-charge Zuma.

These conversations happened in the weeks before the ANC’s conference in Polokwane in December 2007, when Zuma was elected its new leader, in a race closely contested by Mbeki.

NPA Acting National Director Mokotedi Mpshe said on Monday the recordings showed that McCarthy had abused the legal process.

The Times Blog: DA lays charges against Zuma lawyer:

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has laid criminal charges against ANC president Jacob Zuma's attorney Michael Hulley and the National Intelligence Agency's deputy director Arthur Fraser at the Durban Central Police station.

Hulley was charged on the grounds that he was allegedly in possession of illegal or stolen recordings of intercepted telephone conversations while Fraser, the brother of the former minister of public service and administration, Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, was charged with distributing the illegally-taped conversations.

On Monday, the National Prosecuting Authority announced it would drop corruption charges against Zuma, saying the taped conversations between former NPA head Bulelani Ngcuka and former Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy pointed to an “abuse of process” in handling the Zuma case.

DA safety and security spokesman Dianne Kohler Barnard said: “Neither Mr Hulley nor his client is a state official and Mr Hulley appears to have obtained these tapes specifically for the purpose of assisting his private legal client, Mr Zuma. As such Mr Hulley appears to be in possession of stolen property.”

Kohler Barnard said the charges were laid in terms of the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information Act 70 of 2002.

She said: “We believe that an investigation must take place into the circumstances surrounding this intercepted communication.”

Orion Spur:Zuma takes aim at Constitutional Court judges’ “godly” powers:

All 783 corruption charges against him withdrawn by a de-toothed National Prosecuting Authority before the court case could even begin, soon-to-be South African President Jacob Zuma:

has blasted the conduct of the judiciary and questioned the supremacy of the Constitutional Court as the highest court in the land, saying it “is not God”.

Maintaining a posture of sneering, laconic cynicism just doesn’t do it for me anymore. I’m not in the mood to deconstruct the message, or interrogate the fricking subtext, or expose the hidden agenda of the publisher of the message. Academics have always been useless in the face of thuggery. We’re heading towards an epic fuckup and we’re too civilized to stop it.

From the Yfm Political Blog, we get a scary idea of the large following Mr.Zuma has backing him…

About 71% of ANC Supporters – believe Party President Jacob Zuma – is innocent of fraud and corruption charges – but 31% of South Africans – believe Msholozi (Zuma) should face the music.

This according to a survey by Ipsos – Markinor – into how the Mzansi(South African) public – perceive the ruling party’s presidential candidate.

Anneke Greyling the Director of Ipsos Markinor says – the survey questioned over 3000 citizens – who have registered to vote in this years general elections.

Mr.Zuma is still running for elections and PaintBall Craze blog shows us how the public are creatively reacting to his running for the presidency now that all charges are dropped against him…

THE ANC is not amused by fake election posters mocking its president, Jacob Zuma.

The posters appeared on streetlights on Jan Smuts Avenue and Oxford Road, in Johannesburg, yesterday. They have been placed above real ANC posters that feature Zuma’s face. One fake poster says: “What a lovely kanga you are wearing.” The next asks: “Was it made in China?” All the fake posters use the ANC’s colours and carry the slogan: “Vote Zuma. A better life for me.” One poster declares: “Justice is the name of my next wife.” The ANC has blamed the posters on “mischievous forces of darkness”.

ANC spokeswoman Lindiwe Zulu said the ruling party would complain to the Independent Electoral Commission and would open a case with the police . “This is sabotage. First they were defacing our posters, but now they are doing this. We are going to act,” Zulu said. Some of the fake posters are written in German, Portuguese, French and Italian. One, in Sotho, declares: “Ke nako ya go ithuta sezulu” (It’s time you learned to speak Zulu). Another proclaims: “Bush and I have plenty in common.”

And finally, a word by SA-Essay summing up the general feeling of bloggers and South African citizens alike when it comes to the effect this will have on its government structures…

African National Congress President Jacob Zuma – likely to become the country's next president – has blasted the conduct of the judiciary and questioned the supremacy of the Constitutional Court as the highest court in the land, saying it “is not God”.

And Matthew Phosa doing the same for the treasury:

The government under ANC leader Jacob Zuma would set up a commission after the election to oversee all the ministries, including the National Treasury, a senior official of the ruling party said yesterday.

The commission would co-ordinate the implementation of government programmes, as well as spending, budgets and “how they are being handled from top to bottom”, said Mathews Phosa, the ANC's treasurer general.

These are the 2 sections of government which have fared well for the last few years years. They have both been consistant and (mostly) effective.

Interference in either of these WOULD be the final curtain for stability in south africa. And they are already celebrating their victory, and revenge.

God help us all.

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