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Presidency ordered to pay costs after withdrawal of state capture appeal

The Presidency has been ordered to pay costs, following the decision to withdraw the application for leave to appeal a High Court judgement related to the Public Protector’s report on state capture.

The Presidency was in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Wednesday to formally indicate President Cyril Ramaphosa’s April 6 decision to withdraw the appeal application – made by his predecessor Jacob Zuma in December.

READ MORE: Justice dept paid R24m for Zuma’s legal costs – Masutha

Zuma had filed the original appeal through the Presidency while he was still in office, after the court dismissed his bid to review former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s ‘State of Capture report.

The court also ordered Zuma to pay the estimated R10-million legal costs in his personal capacity.

State attorney Isaac Chowe, for the Presidency, asked on Wednesday that the court make a costs order up to the April 6 date.

He also indicated that Ramaphosa’s withdrawal did not prevent Zuma from appealing the judgment in his private capacity.

Judge President Dunstan Mlambo ordered that the Presidency pay costs, up to the present date.

“With the leave of the court, the withdrawal of the application for leave to appeal is duly granted,” Mlambo said on behalf of a full bench.

“The applicant is ordered to pay the costs in the application for leave to appeal to date, being April 18, 2018.”

Economic Freedom Fighters counsel Dali Mpofu, also party to the case along with other opposition parties, argued that the court should make a second order, that the appeal as a whole be “dismissed”.

READ MORE: Zuma: ‘Innocent until proven otherwise’

He wanted to “close the door” on them “ever having to deal with the issue again” – possibly referring to Zuma bringing an appeal in his personal capacity.

The judges, however, argued that a withdrawal of the application, if granted by the court, would not necessitate a further dismissal in law.

Zuma is still able to join the case as a private party, and appeal the decision that he pay the estimated R10-million legal bill personally. – News24

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