Social media split over ConCourt’s Jacob Zuma ruling

Former president Jacob Zuma has been sentenced to 15 months behind bars. File photo.
Former president Jacob Zuma has been sentenced to 15 months behind bars. File photo.

Politicians and citizens have reacted to the Constitutional Court finding former president Jacob Zuma guilty of contempt of court for failure to comply with an order to appear before the state capture inquiry.

The court made the ruling on Tuesday, sentencing Zuma to a 15-month jail term.

IFP spokesperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said the ruling demonstrates no-one is above the law.

“This matter did not have to go this far had the former president complied with the directive of the state capture commission. We hope he will respect and honour this ruling and comply with the order that he must submit himself to the police within the next five days,” he said.

Hlengwa appealed for calm and urged supporters of the former president to accept the ruling.

One SA Movement’s Mmusi Maimane welcomed the ruling and said it marks a significant time in the country’s history.

Zuma’s ally and Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) spokesperson Carl Niehaus called for “peace-loving South Africans” to challenge the ruling. He said the ruling is politically motivated.

“I will not and cannot accept this. I call on every one of my fellow ANC members to say the same. It cannot be that a man who dedicated his life to justice has to be targeted, imprisoned and humiliated,” he said in a video shared on Twitter. 

The state capture inquiry applied to the Constitutional Court for Zuma to be imprisoned for two years for breaching the court’s order to obey summonses that he appear before the inquiry to testify.

Despite a court order compelling him to appear, Zuma failed to turn up in February. In April, the court issued directions that Zuma must file an affidavit addressing what penalty the court should impose if it were to find him in contempt of court.

Here are some of the reactions on social media: 

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