While Zuma lies and giggles in front of Zondo, the noose is ...

Ideas

While Zuma lies and giggles in front of Zondo, the noose is tightening

He ca, joke, play the victim and make up nonsense about spies all he likes, his day in court is coming

Columnist

Jacob Zuma’s shameless and shambolic appearance at the Zondo commission of inquiry underlines the damage he has done to this country. He collapsed our law enforcement agencies by handing them over to the likes of Berning Ntlemeza and Shaun Abrahams. These law enforcement agencies became toothless. Their ability to investigate or prosecute anyone was destroyed. Talented civil servants fled to the private sector. High crime flourished.

Zuma’s appearance clearly shows that the man should not have been testifying at a judicial commission of inquiry. He shouldn’t have been giggling and diverting attention from the real questions by raising hoary, discredited, paranoid allegations that some of his comrades are spies. He should have been in a court of law, answering straight questions that demanded straight answers, from a prosecutor. He should have been charged with corruption, and facing real consequences for his actions.

Instead, given what the Zondo commission is, he pitched up and played victim. He coughed and joked away his transgressions. He could sit in front of the judge and, with a straight face, say he does not recall phone calls he made in 2010 to Themba Maseko, the straight-as-an-arrow former government communications head. He could say this while he had no problem remembering with clarity a hug between Siphiwe Nyanda and an alleged apartheid spy. In 1983. There’s an expression for that: selective memory...

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