Jacob Zuma’s Public Prosecution Case Against Maughan and Downer Postponed to 2023

Jacob Zuma’s Public Prosecution Case Against Maughan and Downer Postponed to 2023

  • The private prosecution case against journalist Karyn Maughan and prosecutor Billy Downer has been postponed until next year
  • Former president Jacob Zuma instituted the prosecution case against the pair for what he describes as the leaking of his confidential medical records
  • Both Maughan and Downer have filed applications to have the case dismissed and have called the proceedings an abuse of processes

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PIETERMARITZBURG - Former president Jacob Zuma's private prosecution of state advocate Billy Downer and legal journalist Karyn Maughan has been adjourned to 2 February 2023.

Karyn Maughan, Jacob Zuma and Billy Downer
Jacob Zuma’s public prosecution case against Karyn Maughan and Billy Downer has been postponed to early next year. Image: Rajesh JANTILAL/ AFP
Source: Getty Images

The public prosecution case began in The KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg on Monday, 10 October.

The former president instituted the case against Maughan and Downer over allegations that Downer slipped the journalist a medical note submitted to the court as part of a postponement application in Zuma's corruption case.

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The former president's advocate, Dali Mpofu, conceded that the private prosecution was "unique" and "even strange" as he had never participated in one as a legal practitioner.

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Maughan filed an urgent application arguing that Zuma didn't secure a nolle prosequi which would entitle the former president to prosecute her. The application will be heard in December. Downer also launched his own application to have the prosecution declared abuse of court processes.

News24 reported that Zuma wants Maughan's application dismissed, claiming he has the right to prosecute her. Still, the journalist maintains that the former president does not have the standing to prosecute.

There is speculation that Zuma will try and use the private prosecution case to have his corruption case postponed. However, EWN reported that the corruption case would return to court next week.

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South Africans react to the postponement of the private prosecution case

South Africans took to social media to weigh in on the public prosecution case.

Here are some comments:

@matlhapa_abbey said:

"Zuma's wish is coming at costs because Billy wants Zuma to cough R500,000 for the security on the Case. The Court has since postponed the case to 2023. Will Zuma still be around then?"

@isabelt2603 commented:

"Aaaahhhh, Carl and Zuma are now going to seek comfort..."

Director-Dee Sithole added:

"State Prosecutor sharing info to a journalist. Wow, WMC agents are busy at work."

Si Mokoena claimed:

"President Zuma, you must never retreat, deal with the decisively."

Thabiso Sello suggested:

"They should drag it out for 20 years, like his corruption trial(s)."

Da Messy stated:

"Should be thrown out of court and Zuma should be thrown in jail where he belongs"

Tonia Mtyalela asked:

"So Zuma, no more ill health that gave him parole? Now he is all fired up. Ja ne, corruption will show itself in many ways."

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Former President Jacob Zuma ordered to pay R500k extra to continue with private prosecution

‘Newly freed’ Zuma expected to thank supporters during Billy Downer and Karyn Maughan private prosecution case

In a related story, Briefly news reported that former president Jacob Zuma is expected to show appreciation to his supporters during the private prosecution case against prosecutor Billy Downer & legal journalist Karyn Maughan.

The trio will be in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg on Monday, 10 October. The court will hear the case in which Zuma accuses Downer of leaking his confidential medical records to Maughan.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) granted Zuma a certificate for private prosecution in July 2022 after it rejected calls to prosecute Downer.

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Source: Briefly News

Lerato Mutsila avatar

Lerato Mutsila (Current affairs editor) Lerato Mutsila is a journalist with 3 years of experience. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Pearson Institute of Higher Education in 2020, majoring in broadcast journalism, political science and communication. Lerato joined the Briefly News current affairs desk in August 2022. Mutsila is also a fellow of the 2021/2022 Young African Journalists Acceleration programme, which trained African journalists in climate journalism. You can contact Lerato at lerato.mutsila@breifly.co.za

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