The Helen Suzman Foundation and the Council for the Advancement of the Constitution have accused former president Jacob Zuma of comparing legal apples to oranges in their latest submission to the Constitutional Court.
The organisations were responding to a call by the Constitutional Court for both legal teams to make submissions on whether the court should consider international law in Jacob Zuma’s rescission application. In particular, the court called on the parties to file papers between 13 and 18 August that consider the role of the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), with specific reference to Articles 9 and 14.
This was after Zuma’s legal team approached the court to have his 15-month prison term rescinded, arguing that the sentence was an infringement on his right to a fair trial. His lawyers have also told the court that if the judges had considered international law, they would have made a different ruling.
The ICCPR says that an accused person should have an opportunity to challenge his sentence and conviction in a higher court – something Zuma could not do since the sentence was issued by the highest court in the land. Zuma’s lawyers have said this…