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Zuma's lawyer says bid to overturn Abrahams decision is 'likely'

Zuma's lawyer says bid to overturn Abrahams decision is 'likely'

The NPA will also be prosecuting the local affiliate of French arms company Thales for its role in the arms deal saga alongside former president Jacob Zuma, the prosecuting authority has said.

Zuma was indicted on 28 December 2007 on charges of racketeering, corruption, money laundering and fraud. "A trial court would be the most appropriate [venue] for the ventilation of the issues".

"After considering the matter, I am of the view that there are reasonable prospects of a successful prosecution of Zuma on the charges listed in the indictment served to him prior to the termination of the matter by former acting national director of prosecutions Mokotedi Mpshe in 2009", Abrahams said.

His financial adviser at the time was found guilty of soliciting bribes.

Zuma was forced to resign as president in February after facing pressure from his ruling African National Congress party (ANC).

Abrahams said he had carefully considered representations made by Zuma, via his legal team, but rejected the former president's submission which contained allegations of prosecutorial misconduct and "inexplicable delays".

The Opposition political party, Democratic Alliance (DA) applied to the courts for the charges against Zuma to be reinstated.

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"The charges have been reinstated for them as well, and they will appear in court with Zuma", NPA spokesperson Luvuyo Mfaku told News24.

According to officials, Zuma is set to be charged with 16 counts of corruption relating to 783 instances of alleged wrongdoing.

The case also included those in Zuma's inner-circle.

"While this victory must be celebrated, we must point out that none of the various national directors of public prosecution who served through the Zuma presidency acted with the requisite independence and moral courage required of that office".

Shaik was released on medical parole in March 2009‚ after serving just over two years of his 15-year sentence.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane said in Johannesburg on Saturday that Zuma would face the charges as a private citizen.

According to prosecutors, Zuma and fellow officials received some €4.2 billion ($5 billion) in kickbacks. That accountability starts now.