Shaun Abrahams Turn Down Former President Zuma’s Request

PICTURE: Themba Hadebe

JOHANNESBURG: Prosecutions head Shaun Abrahams has not acceded to a request by former president Jacob Zuma to withdraw his criminal prosecution, pending the outcome of a separate legal battle over who will carry the costs.

Abrahams wrote to Zuma’s lawyer Michael Hulley, denying a request for a stay in proceedings at the Durban High Court, pending the finalisation of who will pay for Zuma’s legal bills.

Opposition parties have asked the court to put an end to the taxpayer footing the bill of Zuma’s personal legal costs.

In a letter written to Hulley, Abrahams says he cannot accede to a request for a stay in prosecution nor can he withdraw the criminal case against Zuma at the Durban High Court.

He was responding to a letter Hulley wrote to him last week making those demands.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Luvuyo Mfaku says Zuma is free to make this request to the court when he appears on Friday.

“Issues relating to his legal representation and the financial aid, those will be placed before the court and the court will decide on the way forward.”

Zuma faced a blow when President Cyril Ramaphosa told the court he will abide and not oppose the case challenging the State’s funding of his legal costs.