Former President Jacob Zuma will not be going to jail any time soon – after the Constitutional Court agreed to hear his application for a rescission of its contempt ruling against him.
In directions issued one day after Zuma launched urgent legal action to undo the contempt finding made against him or plead for a lesser sentence than the 15 months he currently faces, the Constitutional Court agreed that it would hear his rescission application on 12 July.
Zuma will still have to apply for an order staying the committal orders granted against him by the Constitutional Court in the Pietermaritzburg High Court. The Court’s agreement to hear the case will arguably make it easier for him to obtain that stay.
The police are however understood to have agreed to arrest him before the hearing of that urgent stay application, which is set down for Tuesday.
Zuma was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment after he defied the apex court’s ruling that he appear before the State Capture Inquiry and answer questions that did not implicate him in specific crimes.
After refusing to make any submissions on the sanction he should face, Zuma now argues that sending him to prison would amount to a “death sentence”.
He also denies he is guilty of contempt.
The Inquiry is opposing his rescission application and had until Tuesday to file papers in response to his arguments.