The high court in Pretoria dismissed Zuma’s bid to appeal a costs order made against him in his personal capacity when he went to court to review former public protector Thuli Madonsela’s ‘State of Capture’ report.
TimesLive reports the court ruled that it was “not in the interests of justice” to grant Zuma’s condonation application, which was necessary for an actual ‘leave-to-appeal’ application.
A full bench heard the application earlier this year, where Zuma’s legal team argued to appeal against the costs order, which was made in December last year (these things do seem to take a lot of time – Ed.) That order compelled Zuma to pay what could be about R10m in legal fees in his personal capacity.
In December, high court judge president Dunstan Mlambo described Zuma’s review application of the report as “ill-advised” and “reckless”.
Things were not going the former faltering and failing president’s way at all recently. He took Madonsela’s report on review, and was slapped with two punitive costs orders relating to the report. The first time around he got ‘klapped’ in court for a botched attempt to interdict the release of the report. And then when he asked the court to take the report on review he got a second hiding.
TimesLive reported this weekend that besides having to fork out the money for the original costs order, Zuma’s financial woes deepened even further when the court also ordered him – on Friday – to pay the costs of both the condonation application in the matter and the actual application for leave to appeal.
All of the respondents in the matter, which included the DA, the EFF, UDM, Cope and the Council for the Advancement of the SA Constitution, asked the court for costs against Zuma in his personal capacity.
The high court in Pretoria also reserved judgment on whether Zuma would have to pay back the money the state has paid to fund his criminal defence, which has taken the form of a years-long legal battle.
It is anybody’s guess hat the amount of the legal costs were in the criminal matter. Intelligent people say it could be up to R32m, which could cause Zuma to sell a couple of designer suites and a Rolex should he need to pay that back as well.
It could hot have happened to a nicer old chap. Zuma faces 16 charges of fraud, corruption, money laundering and racketeering stemming from 783 alleged payments to him in relation to the arms deal when he was KwaZulu-Natal MEC of economic affairs and tourism.
Deputy judge president Aubrey Ledwaba said the court would try to have a judgment on the matter before the end of this court term, which is in December. (We are not holding our breath because we all know judges start work at tea-time and morning and bugger off home shortly around lunch – Ed.)