The Constitutional Court dismissed an attempt by the Department of Correctional Services to appeal the verdict that effectively sent former President Jacob Zuma to prison to continue his sentence.
His incarceration caused the July 2021 violence, which saw businesses in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng plundered and destroyed, and over 350 people killed.
The highest court in the land denied the department’s primary application on Thursday afternoon. It also denied Zuma’s legal team’s application to intervene in the case.
It stated both had no chance of success, thereby returning Zuma to prison without specifying a timeframe.
“The Constitutional Court has considered the application for leave to appeal (main application) and the application to intervene.
“It has been concluded that the main application should be dismissed as it bears no reasonable prospects of success.
“Consequently, the application to intervene falls to be dismissed,” the ConCourt ruled.
Zuma was imprisoned in July 2021 for failing to comply with the court’s order to appear before the Zondo Commission and testify.
But, barely three months into his 15-month imprisonment, the then-Commissioner of Correctional Services, Arthur Fraser, granted him medical parole and released him in September.
The DA, Helen Suzman Foundation, and Afriforum successfully challenged the decision in court, and Zuma’s release was ruled illegal.
The department stated that it was still reviewing the judgment. “The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) is studying the Constitutional Court judgment for the review application in relation to the medical parole placement for the former President, Mr Jacob Zuma.
“DCS is seeking legal advice and will comment further in due course,” It said in a statement shortly after the ruling.
Mzwanele Manyi, a spokesman for the Jacob Zuma Foundation, stated that the department is the appropriate party to remark on since it was the one that filed the application.