Jacob Zuma. Picture: SOWETAN
Jacob Zuma. Picture: SOWETAN

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has rejected former President Jacob Zuma’s request that the state halt its corruption case against him pending the outcome of a legal battle over who will fund it.

"The national director of public prosecutions has notified Mr Zuma’s lawyer, saying he cannot accede to his request," Luvuyo Mfaku, a spokesperson for the NPA, said by phone. "The Criminal Procedure Act doesn’t empower the NPA to stay proceedings; it can only withdraw them. It would not be in the interest of justice to entertain the matter further."

Zuma is due to appear in court on Friday to face 16 charges ranging from corruption to racketeering that date back to the 1990s.

In March, the DA asked the courts to rule that Zuma must pay his own legal bills, and in May, the Presidency said it would not challenge a ruling to that effect.

Michael Hulley, Zuma’s lawyer, did not answer calls to his cellphone.