Publication: Mail and Guardian Issued: Date: 2003-09-12 Reporter: Keith Gottschalk

SA System is not Corrupt



Mail and Guardian

Date 2003-09-12


Keith Gottschalk

Web Link


All the press commentators and the letters in last week's Mail & Guardian from Khumo Thetele, Charle Cele and Sabata-mpho Mokae ignored what National Director of Public Prosecutions Bulelani Ngcuka said at his press conference.

Ngucka said that while there was a prima facie case against Schabir Shaik and Jacob Zuma, he had only letters about Zuma, not by him. Senior counsel had advised Ngcuka that this was only circumstantial evidence, and more challengeable.

So why is it not a rational, legal decision to see if the Shaik trial court accepts or rejects such letters as evidence, before deciding whether to prosecute Zuma?

The second point all commentators ignore is that it is false to claim that Zuma cannot clear his name unless prosecuted. Any third party incriminated in someone else's trial has the right to apply for his lawyer to represent his interests during that trial. His lawyer can cross-examine and challenge any incriminating evidence.

I can't afford a lawyer, but someone paid half a million rand a year can.

Last, South Africans should celebrate how uncorrupt our system is. Unlike Italy, the African National Congress does not propose making a new law that you cannot prosecute a deputy president or prime minister. Nor propose repealing the law that it is a crime to falsify accounts.

Transparency International should be challenged each year its "index" claims South Africa is more corrupt than Italy.

With acknowledgements to Keith Gottschalk and the Mail and Guardian.