Zuma submits application to ConCourt for recusal of six judges

JOHANNESBURG – Former president Jacob Zuma wants six Constitutional Court judges to recuse themselves from his legal battle with South Africa’s Independent Electoral Commission (IEC), citing possible bias.

This comes after the IEC went to the high court to challenge Zuma’s candidacy in the May 29 election.

Last month – the Electoral Tribunal ruled that Zuma could run for public office, overturning the IEC’s decision to disqualify him from serving as a member of Parliament.

uMkhonto weSizwe leader Zuma has filed a countersuit at the Constitutional Court.

Zuma says he and the party have a reasonable fear that a minimum of six Constitutional Court judges will not be fit to resolve the matter between him and the IEC.

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These include judges Mbuyiseli Madlanga, Steven Majiedt, Nonkosi Mhlantla, Leona Theron and Zukisa Tshiqi.

Zuma says there is a conflict of interest because they were part of the court that convicted him and sentenced him to 15 months for contempt of court, for failing to appear before the state capture commission.

Chief Justice Raymond Zondo is listed as the sixth to recuse himself, although Zuma admits that Zondo publicly announced that he would not participate in cases involving Zuma.

The court needs a quorum of 8 of its 11 judges to preside over a matter.

This means that, if he is challenged, the Constitutional Court cannot decide on the merits of the case on May 10, almost three weeks before the elections.