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HomeNewsMpofu places Zuma’s state of health in the spotlight at SCA

Mpofu places Zuma’s state of health in the spotlight at SCA

Mpofu was challenging the Gauteng High Court’s decision to set aside the former president’s successful application for parole when he submitted his arguments in front of a full Bench at the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein.

Mashudu Sadike

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COURTS are competing with the opinion of medical experts as far as Jacob Zuma’s parole goes, the former president’s lawyer, Dali Mpofu, argued yesterday.

Mpofu was challenging the Gauteng High Court’s decision to set aside the former president’s successful application for parole when he submitted his arguments in front of a full Bench at the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein.

Zuma was granted medical parole in September last year after serving two months of a 15-month prison sentence following his refusal to appear before the state capture commission chaired by now Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

The former president handed himself over in July 2021 after the apex court found him guilty of contempt of court. The move sparked unrest that resulted in the deaths of more than 400 people and billions worth of damage to public infrastructure, mostly in KwaZulu-Natal.

AfriForum, the DA and the Helen Suzman Foundation were the applicants in the matter that saw Zuma ordered to serve the remainder of his sentence in custody.

Zuma lawyers try to overturn decision to send him back to jail

Mpofu argued that Zuma had the right to be protected by the Constitution of the country, saying that former prison boss Arthur Fraser considered medical experts’ advice that Zuma was terminally ill and therefore recommended that he be paroled.

He said in court: “The very reason that he is stable is because he (Zuma) is sitting at a private hospital in Pretoria. That private hospital in Pretoria is not the same thing as the Estcourt facility and we cannot keep him there for 15 months in the private hospital.”

Mpofu was referring to Fraser’s reason for granting Zuma parole.

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He added: “We simply do not have the facilities to cater for what is said in these reports (recommendations that Zuma had a terminal disease). We cannot override the expert opinion that he is suffering from a terminal illness.

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