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South Africa: Judge Zondo Delivers a Judicial Smackdown to Jacob Zuma’s Recusal Bid


But Jacob Zuma will take that decision on review – cue: months of delays

Judge Raymond Zondo, the chairperson of the State Capture Commission of Inquiry, delivered a three-part, one-hour long judicial smackdown to former President Jacob Zuma’s bid to force the judge to recuse himself.

Wearing a surgical mask, Zuma who looked drawn and tense before the Commission this week, listened intently as the judge delivered his decision. Zondo had delayed his judgment three times and finally made it on Thursday, November 19.

“The application for my recusal is accordingly dismissed,” he said as he demolished Zuma’s three-part demand for recusal.

On a personal relationship

Part 1 was that he and the judge are friends and that Zondo was thus conflicted in his entire role as Commission chairperson. “There was no sound reason why Zuma only raised a personal relationship close to three years after (he was appointed Commission of Inquiry chairperson),” said Zondo. “If the applicant felt that way, he should have raised the matter with the chief justice (at the time of the appointment). ” Zuma had argued he had not done so for fear of being seen to interfere in the choice of the chairperson.


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