Bernadette Wicks20 May 2024 | 5:57

ConCourt set to rule on Zuma's eligibility to serve as MP

Judgement is expected on Monday for the IEC’s urgent bid to appeal the Electoral Court’s decision to overturn its decision to disqualify Zuma from the upcoming polls due to his 15-month prison sentence in 2021.

ConCourt set to rule on Zuma's eligibility to serve as MP

Former President Jacob Zuma, leader of the uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) Party, looks on while sitting on stage during the People’s Mandate Launch at Orlando Stadium in Soweto on 18 May 2024. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Former President Jacob Zuma's potential future as a member of Parliament will be decided on Monday.

The uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) Party included him in the candidates list it submitted ahead of the elections, but the Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) disqualified him because of his 15-month prison sentence for contempt in 2021.

The Electoral Court overturned the IEC's decision and the commission then turned to the Constitutional Court with an urgent appeal bid.


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The Electoral Court’s key findings were that the presidential remission Zuma was granted had the legal effect of cutting down his sentence to below the 12-month threshold, and that because he was sentenced by the apex court and couldn’t appeal, his wasn’t the kind of sentence contemplated in the Constitution, which says the disqualification only kicks in after all appeals have been exhausted.

Should it get to the merits, the Constitutional Court’s judgment will likely focus largely on these findings.

MK Party and Zuma have also brought a cross-appeal challenging the Electoral Court’s finding that his conviction, at least, was the kind contemplated in the Constitution, the outcome of which should also form part of Monday’s judgment.