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Zuma says lawyer costs public R700 per hour

Sapa

Michael Hulley, the lawyer who helped get corruption charges dropped against President Jacob Zuma in 2009, is being paid close to R700 an hour.

President Jacob Zuma. (Gallo)

Michael Hulley is being paid close to R700 an hour for providing legal advice to Zuma.

In a written reply to a parliamentary question by Democratic Alliance MP James Selfe, Zuma did not refer to Hulley by name, but said "the person" worked on a part-time basis as his special adviser.

"The person is employed on a part-time basis and there is thus no fixed annual remuneration," Zuma said.

"He is paid per hours worked at the rate of R693.77 per hour."

In a statement later, Selfe said he would submit follow-up questions to determine exactly how much the public had forked out to pay for both Hulley's legal fees in representing the president in court and as his adviser.

"It is clear that in his determination to avoid facing over 700 charges of fraud and corruption and his countless attempts at evading the courts, President Zuma seems quite content to have his substantial and ever increasing legal bill being passed on to ordinary South Africans," Selfe said.

R1mn bill
​Earlier, it was revealed that the public paid over R1-million in the court case involving the DA trying to gain access to the so-called spy tapes.

The so-called spy tapes are recordings of intercepted phone conversations between former NPA head Bulelani Ngcuka and then boss of the now extinguished Scorpions, Leonard McCarthy.

The tapes formed the basis of then acting NPA head Mokatedi Mpshe's decision to drop corruption and fraud charges against President Jacob Zuma in 2009.

"An amount of R1 262 479.70 has been paid to date in respect of costs incurred in defending litigation brought by the Democratic Alliance for the record from the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in relation to the NPA's decision with regard to the president," Zuma said in written reply to a parliamentary question on Monday.

"The recordings represent one aspect of the litigation instituted by the Democratic Alliance.

The amount paid is a reflection of the costs of the entire matter, and not only in respect of the recordings," Zuma said.

The tapes, and transcripts and other documents, relate to a 2009 NPA decision to drop corruption charges against Zuma.

Zuma has been granted leave to appeal the ruling in August that the NPA lodge the tapes with the registrar of the high court in Pretoria within five working days. – Sapa

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