Former President Jacob Zuma is back in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Monday morning as he tries to once again stop his corruption trial from going ahead.
Zuma is facing charges of fraud, corruption, racketeering and money-laundering related to the controversial multi-billion rand arms deal in the late 1990s.
He has filed a 300-page application for a permanent stay of prosecution, saying there’s a political conspiracy against him.
Zuma’s bid to halt the prosecution will be joined by Thales, the French arms company accused of bribing him.
The former president is hoping his new legal team helps him stave off the charges.
They’re expected to tell the court that there have been unreasonable delays to Zuma’s case – which have affected his reputation – and could lead to him not receiving a fair trial.
But the NPA will argue that the former president is responsible for the delays and that the State has a strong case against him.
Jacob Zuma’s new team of advocates include senior counsels Muzi Sikhakhane and Thabani Masuku.
Attorney Daniel Mantanga also forms part of Zuma’s team that will be arguing in favor of a stay of prosecution.
The State’s case will be led by senior deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Advocate Billy Downe, who successfully prosecuted Schabir Shaik on corruption charges.
If the court grants Zuma his permanent stay of prosecution, he will never face the corruption charges.
If it rejects his application, there could be more delays to the case as the former president can approach the Supreme Court of Appeal and the Constitutional Court to appeal the judgment.
Jacob Zuma’s sons, Duduzane and Edward, have arrived at the court to support him.