The Running Commentary

ANCYL must look at the evidence….

question markANCYL calling the judiciary biased or influenced. I have tried to see the point of view raised by the ANCYL that the judiciary is biased against Jacob Zuma and that he cannot possibly get a fair hearing in terms of the rule of law in this country.I have tried, but I have not succeeded……The courts are governed by clear parameters, the most important of which is the burden of proof. The person bringing the charge has to “prove beyond reasonable doubt” that the dependant is indeed guilty. If the prosecutor is unable to prove this with then the defendant is proven innocent, by default the way they arrive in court, and then they are free to leave.

The only thing the defendant has to worry about is if the facts / evidence are that he/she is guilty. If this is the case, well then they are going to be held to account and therefore must expect and accept whatever sentencing comes their way.

Once again the rule of law makes provision, in terms of sentencing, by means of precedent. Once precedent has been set, then other judges are free to use this, if they agree, to sentence other defendants (who have been found guilty).

We are not in an apartheid state anymore and my view would be that the judiciary has moved from the once feared racist institution that it was into a more representative forum. The verdicts are looked at and judges are not simply going to be swayed by the state, should the evidence lead prove otherwise. No Judge will stake their reputation and rule against fact particularly in such a high profile case as the Zuma trial.

In fact one could come up with quite a convincing argument that if any influence was to come to bear that the Judge may be inclined to rule in favour of the defendant for fear of retribution. This is particularly relevant given the ANCYL presidents statement of “we will kill for Zuma” (I know I am paraphrasing here)

In short I am suggesting that if the ANCYL felt that the trial was not going to be fair, then they have recourse through the courts to redress the issue. The evidence will be the only thing that can prove guilt and if the evidence proves guilt then they will have not option but to accept the decision.


Mike • August 4, 2008

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