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Former South African President Jacob Zuma Formally Appeals to Appeal in a Bribery Case


The former head of state is being sued for receiving 238,000 euros in bribes from the Thales group as part of a € 3 billion arms deal.

Former South African President Jacob Zuma, on October 15, 2019, at his trial in Pietermaritzburg. REUTERS

Former South African President Jacob Zuma has officially appealed the court's decision to prosecute him for "bribery" in an old weapons deal involving the French group Thales, according to news reports. parquet Sunday, November 3rd.

Read also In South Africa, former President Zuma on the bench for corruption

"I can confirm that Mr. Zuma has filed his appeal," AFP spokeswoman Natasha Kara told AFP. It is now up to the courts to decide on the admissibility of this appeal, before eventually studying it on the merits.

Jacob Zuma, in power from 2009 to 2018, is accused of receiving 4 million rand (238,000 euros) in bribes from the French defense and electronics group Thales, in the context of a huge armament contract of 51 billion rand (3 billion euros) awarded in 1999.

" Witch hunt "

Jacob Zuma and Thales, who won part of this contract for the equipment of military ships and is also pursued in this case with multiple twists, have always denied the allegations. The former president considers himself a victim of a "witch hunt" .

In early October, a South African court unanimously refused to abandon, as claimed by Jacob Zuma, the prosecution against him. In the wake, the beginning of his trial - the first for corruption of the sulfurous ex-president - had been set for October 15.

Read also Washington sanctions the Gupta brothers, close to former South African President Zuma

But the day said, his lawyers had announced their intention to appeal, de facto postponing the start of the trial. According to the judicial calendar, they had until Friday, November 1 to formally ask to appeal, which they did.

Questioned in 2003 in the Thales case, Jacob Zuma has always managed to escape justice. His financial adviser at the time, Schabir Shaik, was convicted of corruption in 2005 and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Source: lemonde

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