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Zuma must repay millions in corruption ruling
March 31, 2016, 1:58 pm

The ANC is unlikely to pressure Zuma to step down after the court decision [Xinhua]

The ANC is unlikely to pressure Zuma to step down after the court decision [Xinhua]

South Africa’s 11-judge Constitutional Court – the country’s highest legal authority – has said that President Jacob Zuma was in breach of the constitution even after being ordered by a corruption investigation body to pay back $16 million in government funds he spent to renovate a personal home.

Zuma issued a statement reiterating his innocence in any wrongdoing, but his office later said that he would consider the ruling and then take appropriate action.

“The president will reflect on the judgement and its implications on the state and government, and will in consultation with other impacted institutions of state determine the appropriate action,” the government said in a statement made available to the media.

The case stems from the renovation of Zuma’s rural home in Nkandla in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province in 2010.

At the time, the costs reached $23 million.

A corruption case filed by opposition parties against the renovation came to a head in 2014 when the public protector said that Zuma had to repay a portion of the costs to the government.

The Constitutional Court on Thursday said that Zuma had “failed to uphold the law”.

Zuma’s African National Congress party said it respected the Constitutional Court’s decision but ruled out that the embattled president would step down – as opposition pundits have demanded – before the end of his term in 2019.

Zuma has been on the defensive since his abrupt sacking of South African Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and replacing him with David van Rooyen, who is considered an unknown in the industry.

Opposition parties appear to have been emboldened by the court’s decision Thursday. They announced they would hold street protests demanding Zuma step down.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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