South Africa's Zuma to be charged with corruption over arms deal


National Director of Public Prosecutions Shaun Abrahams is expected to announce his decision soon on whether Zuma will be prosecuted.

The announcement on Friday compounded Zuma's dramatic fall from power after he was forced to step down as president on February 14 to be replaced by new ruling party leader, Cyril Ramaphosa.

In a statement released on Thursday, 15 March, the DA says that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) "has run out of ways to delay his decision on the matter", and that the DA's nine-year attempts to have the charges against former president Zuma reinstated, have "finally come to a head".

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Appearing before Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on Wednesday night, Shaun Abrahams refused to reveal to MPs exactly what his decision is, at least not until he's informed Zuma.

FILE PHOTO: Head of the National Prosecuting Authority, Shaun Abrahams speaks at a media conference in Pretoria, South Africa, October 31,2016. "I am of the view that a trial court will the most appropriate forum for these issues to be ventilated".

While Zuma has consistently denied the allegations, Abrahams told journalists the state has a "reasonable prospect of successful prosecution".

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Then deputy president, Zuma was linked to the arms deal through Schabir Shaikh, his former financial adviser who was jailed for corruption.

A court a year ago ruled against prosecutors' 2009 decision to drop the corruption charges faced by Zuma months before he became president.

Since his election, his opponents fought a lengthy legal battle to have the charges reinstated.

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That, and a commission of inquiry into alleged undue influence by Zuma's friends the Guptas over his administration, will bolster the new president's campaign against corruption.