- During his first day of testimony, former president Jacob Zuma painted an elaborate picture of supposed political sabatoge
- Political and legal analysts say that his allegations before the Zondo Commission better hold up, otherwise Msholozi could be looking at jail-time
- Zuma's allegations against fellow comrades and former friends may well land him in hot water if they prove to be lies
Jacob Zuma took his time during his first day of testimony before the State Capture Inquiry yesterday.
The former president lay down the foundations for his defence, a story of massive political conspiracy, all in the name of removing him from power and discrediting his name.
However, political and legal experts say the proof better be in the pudding or Zuma could be looking at jail-time.
The Citizen reports that lying while under oath is a grave offence, something that may well land the politician in hot water later on.
Dr Llewelyn Curlewis, a procedural law expert, says that perjury is a serious criminal offence for which a court could impose either a fine or a jail sentence with a maximum of 10 years. The length of the sentence varies with the seriousness of the offence, as well as how many times it was repeated:
“Perjury is a serious offence and any person fund guilty of perjury could face serious consequences. If the perjury is serious enough and consistent, then that person is liable for a prison term. Lying under oath is taking a serious risk."
Professor André Duvenhage, a political scientist at the North West University, says that he would not put lying past the former president:
“I would not be surprised because he has done it before. Although we do not know if there is any truth that Ramatlhodi, who was once his minister, was a spy, there have been reports that many of the current ANC leaders were in fact apartheid spies."
Duvenhage chalks Zuma's elaborate story up as an attempt to escape difficult questions by playing the victim and making bombshell claims:
“He wants to get out as easyily as possible, without answering difficult questions."
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