It is a testing time for the judiciary as it prepares for the
trial of African National Congress President Jacob Zuma. His supporters
say the trial is politically motivated and want the charges of
corruption, money laundering and racketeering thrown out. Obstacles
to the prosecution are being sought and threats issued to those
judges pressing ahead with the trial. The outcome will determine
who in the ANC will stand for election as the next President of
Jacob Zuma, having won the election for the presidency of the ruling African National Congress, wants to win next year's election for the presidency of South Africa. He would almost certainly do so if he did not face 16 criminal charges of corruption, money laundering and racketeering. His many allies in the governing African National Congress dismiss the charges as a political set-up by Zuma's opponents. In their zeal to defend their leader, Zuma's allies are trying to block the prosecutions by attacking the courts, the prosecuting authorities, the police and the media. This threatens the separation of powers enshrined in the determinedly liberal 1996 post-apartheid constitution. It may also threaten jobs and prosperity, as political interference with the courts often drives away investors.
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