DA thrilled by landmark state capture judgment against Zuma

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The President must appoint a commission of inquiry within the next 30 days, "headed by a judge exclusively selected by the Chief Justice". Judge President Mlambo said Zuma's conduct "amounts to clear abuse of the judicial process".

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) on Wednesday welcomed a court ruling ordering President Jacob Zuma to establish a judicial commission of inquiry into alleged "state capture".

Judge President Dunstan Mlambo said Zuma had acted in "flagrant disregard" for the constitutional duties of the Public Protector, and that the taxpayer should not "carry that burden" of footing Zuma's legal bill.

BBC Africa correspondent Andrew Harding says the South African judiciary is flexing its muscles, at a time of deepening anxiety about state corruption and apparent impunity.

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The court is due to rule later on Wednesday on whether the president can set the terms of the investigation.

Zuma launched an urgent application last October, a day before an anti-corruption watchdog was to release the "State Capture report" which showed Zuma was being unduly influenced by a wealthy family.

Political instability, including questions over who will replace Zuma has been cited by credit rating agencies as a major factor behind their decision to cut South Africa to "junk".

The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) is relieved that taxpayers do not have to pay for President Jacob Zuma's failed attempts to stop the Public Protector's State of Capture report and the inquiry she recommended.

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The business family of Indian origin is accused of having undue influence over Zuma's government, including power over the appointment of some cabinet ministers.

The commission is to complete its task and present its report within 180 days and Zuma is to submit a copy‚ with an indication of his intentions regarding the implementation‚ to Parliament, within 14 days of its release.

A judicial commission was best suited to investigate the allegations against Zuma, Mlambo said, adding: "The allegations. detailed in the report are extremely serious".

Zuma took issue with the remedial action and applied to court to have it reviewed and set aside.

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He said he believed it was "hopeless" for Zuma to consider appealing the judgments. Zuma and the Guptas have denied all accusations of wrongdoing.

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