No investigation against judge who presided over Zuma criminal case - NPA

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says it has not issued an instruction to police to investigate the judge who had been presiding over former president Jacob Zuma's criminal trial. 

Business Day reported on Monday that Zuma's lawyers had demanded that the prosecuting body disclose whether KwaZulu-Natal deputy Judge President Mjabuliseni Madondo was the subject of an investigation by the Hawks.  

"Recent media enquiries and reports have questioned whether the NPA has directed a criminal investigation of some sort against KZN deputy Judge President Madondo, as suggested in the lawyer's letter to the NPA," the NPA's head of communications Bulelwa Makeke said in a statement.  

"The NPA has issued no such instructions to the police and has been informed that there is no police investigation of this sort," she said.  

According to Business Day, a letter dated May 10 and written to former KwaZulu-Natal Director of Public Prosecutions Moipone Noko, Zuma’s lawyers said it had come to their attention that deputy Judge President Madondo "may have been the subject of intimidation and/or attempts to prosecute him" while he was presiding over Zuma's trial.

Zuma's application for stay of prosecution is expected to be heard on Monday. The former president filed a 300-page affidavit, asking for a permanent stay of prosecution. He claimed he was a victim of an orchestrated attempt by the NPA to link him to corruption.

Thales, the arms company implicated with Zuma, also filed its application in the high court to have the prosecution permanently set aside.

It claimed that it had been denied a fair trial because of unreasonable delays, and that its right to present and challenge evidence had also been denied.

The embattled former president faces serious charges, including one count of racketeering, two counts of corruption, one count of money laundering, and 12 counts of fraud relating to 783 payments he allegedly received in connection with the controversial arms deal.

The arms deal was formally known as the ‘Strategic Defence Procurement Package’. It was a multibillion-rand military acquisition project finalised in 1999.