On 3 December 2020, the Secretary of the JUDICIAL COMMISSION OF INQUIRY INTO ALLEGATIONS OF STATE CAPTURE, CORRUPTION AND FRAUD IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR INCLUDING ORGANS OF STATE (“the State Capture Commission”) launched an urgent application in the Constitutional Court asking that court, among other things,
- to declare that President Zuma is constitutionally obliged to appear before the State Capture Commission and account by giving evidence and answer allegations that he failed as President and head of the executive to fulfill his constitutional obligations;
- to declare that Pres Zuma is obliged to comply with any summons served on him by the Commission;
- directing Pres Zuma to appear before the Commission on 18 to 22 January 2021 and 15 to 19 February 2021 unless otherwise excused by the Chair, and to remain in attendance during that period;
- directing that Pres Zuma must answer all questions put to him, subject to his invoking the right against self-incrimination but not the right to remain silent (which the Commission says is available only to accused persons).
This follows Pres Zuma leaving the Commission hearing on 19 November 2020, and not returning on 20 November 2020 when he was still under summons.
On 17 December 2020, Ngalwana filed a conditional application in the Constitutional Court to be admitted as friend of the court (amicus curiae) raising certain issues not raised by either party that he considers relevant and in the public interest for the Constitutional Court to determine together with the Commission’s application. The application is conditional upon the Constitutional Court granting identified relief in respect of Pres Zuma. It seeks to complement, not oppose, the Commission’s application against Pres Zuma. It asks that the Constitutional Court take into account the “deeper public purpose” of the Commission by extending some of the relief sought in relation to Mr Zuma to other members of his cabinet and other senior civil servants and Eskom chief executive.
On 18 December 2020, CASAC also filed its application in the Constitutional Court to be admitted as friend of the court. It wants Mr Zuma to denied the benefit of the privilege against self-incrimination when answering questions put to him at the Commission.
On 22 December 2020, the Helen Suzman Foundation also filed its application to be admitted as friend of the court. Its focus is the centrality to the rule of law of the importance of everyone, including former head of state, obeying or complying with the summons and subpoenas issued by the Commission.
On 23 December 2020, the Chief Justice issued Directions conveying that all applicants for amicus status must file written submissions by 13h00 on 28 December 2020, but that they “will not present oral argument at the hearing on 29 December 2020” and that a decision as regards whether they will be admitted as friends of the court will be communicated in the judgment of the court.
On 28 December 2020, further Directions were issued laying the ground rules for the conduct of the hearing on 29 December 2020.
Read ALL the parties Written Submissions by clicking on the links immediately below:
Heads of Argument in Secretary Commission v Zuma – 18 December 2020
Written Submissions in State Capture Commission v Zuma – Vuyani Ngalwana 28 December 2020
CASAC Heads of Argument – Secretary Commission v JG Zuma (Case No CCT 295-20)
HSF written submissions
Concourt Directions – 23 December 2020
Concourt Directions – 28 DEcember 2020