Judge Switch for Zuma's Application Next Week
Pretoria - Transvaal Judge President Bernard Ngoepe will no longer hear the urgent application by Deputy President Jacob Zuma against the head of the state's prosecuting authority, Bulelani Ngcuka.
National Director of Public Prosecution's (NDPP) legal adviser, Lungisa Dyosi, said there was nothing sinister about this. Judge Jerry Shongwe is on urgent court duty next week when the case is due to be heard in the Pretoria High Court and he will thus hear the matter.
Meanwhile, at 3.30pm yesterday, the NDPP filed its replying affidavit with Shongwe in chambers, meeting the 4pm deadline. Zuma must file his answers by 4pm tomorrow.
Dyosi said the NDPP "will not at all" make the papers available to the media at this stage. He said the papers would be available once the hearing commenced on Monday.
The NDPP last week repeatedly refused to release the papers before all the parties had filed their answers and the matter was heard in court.
Counsel for the NDPP said certain defamatory statements were made in Zuma's affidavit, which at that stage was the only version before court.
Ngoepe said there was no need for a prohibiting order, but the papers were not yet before court and the media could face legal action if they published potentially defamatory statements at this stage.
Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for Justice Minister Penuell Maduna and Ngcuka to appear before parliament's justice portfolio committee.
DA spokeswoman Sheila Camerer said the two had to explain the decision not to prosecute Zuma.
"I today (Monday) requested the committee chairperson (Johnny de Lange) to call for a briefing on this question, as well as on the various court cases and threatened court cases that are a sequel to that decision," she said yesterday.
With acknowledgements to Zelda Venter and the Cape Times.