Johannesburg, Feb 15 (efe-epa).- Former South African president Jacob Zuma could be facing a prison term after he failed to appear before a commission investigating corruption allegations, the head of the inquiry said on Monday.
“It is a pity that Mr Zuma has decided not to appear before the commission today, in defiance of the inquiry summons and in defiance of an order issued by the highest court in the land. It is even more pity that Zuma did so as a former head of state,” judge Raymond Zondo said.
“This is very serious. If it is allowed to prevail, there will be lawlessness and chaos,” said Zondo, who has been leading the investigation into the so-called State Capture over the past two years.
Zondo’s remarks came after Zuma decided not to testify before the commission despite a ruling by the South Africa’s Constitutional Court in January that Zuma was obligated to comply with the subpoenas issued by the commission.
In the wake of Zuma’s no-show, Zondo announced from the commission’s headquarters in Johannesburg that he would ask the Constitutional Court to send Zuma to jail over “contempt of court”.
A couple of weeks ago, Zuma said in a statement that he did not plan to testify, denouncing being discriminated against by the judicial system.
“I do not fear being arrested, I do not fear being convicted nor do I fear being incarcerated,” Zuma said, labeling the accusations against him as a political witch hunt. EFE-EPA