Jacob Zuma may be digging his heels in after being sentenced to 15 months in prison earlier this week, but the Constitutional Court of South Africa is doing everything it can to get the former president behind bars. On Friday, it was confirmed that ‘warrant papers’ had been signed – rubber-stamping the official jail term for the 79-year-old.
A photo of the warrant papers had been doing the rounds on social media, and it was confirmed as legitimate by legal journalist Karyn Maughan. In the directive, Justice Khampepe confirms that Jacob Zuma will be sent to the Westville Correctional Centre in KZN. It also orders the head of the prison to ‘deal with’ JZ, upon receiving him into custody:
Acting Chief Justice Sisi Khampepe has signed a warrant of committal for former president Jacob Zuma. According to the letter, signed on 30 June 2021, Zuma will be remanded to the Westville Correctional Centre in KwaZulu-Natal pic.twitter.com/vexbKTOg10
— Man's NOT FW De Klerk 🇿🇦 (@FormerStatePres) July 2, 2021
‘WARRANT PAPERS’ SIGNED FOR MSHOLOZI’S INCARCERATION
For those still in denial – particularly, Jacob Zuma and his family – this now makes the situation all seem very real. However, there could be a few major issues in getting Msholozi to comply with the jail sentence. Hundreds of supporters have already gathered at Nkandla, with many more expected to arrive before Sunday 4 July.
Zuma only has another 48 hours to abide by the court ruling, otherwise he will be forcibly arrested. It’s also understood that the family is considering a last-minute appeal at the Pietermaritzburg High Court – which is essentially home turf for the one-time head of state – in a bid to overturn the majority verdict set down on Tuesday.
Any appeal, however, is unlikely to succeed. A bench in PMB would find it extremely difficult to successfully nullify a decision made by the highest judicial authority in the land. But, with Jacob Zuma, you can never rule out the improbable.