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South Africa’s Zuma to face trial for Corruption Over Arms Deal

Former South African president Jacob Zuma

LONDON— South Africa’s chief state prosecutor Shaun Abrahams on Friday said former South African President Jacob Zuma is expected to be charged and prosecuted for corruption relating to a 30 billion-rand ($2.5 billion) arms deal in the late 1990s.

“After consideration of the matter, I am of the view that there are reasonable prospects of successful prosecution of Mr. Zuma on the charges listed in the indictment,” Abrahams said.

Zuma, who disputes all the allegations against him, is to face prosecution for 16 charges of corruption relating to a multi-billion-dollar arms deal.  The case centers on a 30bn rand ($2.5bn; £1.7bn) deal to modernize the country’s defense in the late 1990s.

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According to sources, the charges – which Mr. Zuma denies – include counts of fraud, racketeering and money laundering.

The head of the National Prosecuting Authority, Attorney Shaun Abrahams, who dismissed legal representations made by Mr. Zuma asking that the charges be dropped, said a trial court was the appropriate place for the matter to be decided.

The Chief Prosecutor Shaun Abraham said he believed there were “reasonable prospects of a successful prosecution” in the case.

The 75-years old Mr. Zuma forced to resign as president last month by his party, the ruling African National Congress (ANC) after facing his ninth no-confidence vote in the South African parliament before he left office.

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Paul Stevens

Paul Stevens is a researcher, media issues analyst and senior contributor with Globe Afrique.
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