South African court calls for review of decision to drop Zuma corruption charges


South Africa’s High Court on Friday ruled that a 2009 decision to drop 783 corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma should be reviewed, another setback for the scandal-ridden leader, who faces calls for his resignation.

The decision to set aside the charges seven years ago allowed Zuma to run for president.

The court’s decision at the time was based on phone intercepts presented by Zuma’s legal team that suggested the timing of the charges in late 2007 may have been part of a political plot against Zuma.

The go-ahead from the court adds pressure on Zuma, who has faced calls for his resignation even from within inside the ruling African National Congress party since a damning constitutional court judgment against him last month.

It was not immediately clear whether Zuma would appeal Friday’s court ruling.

The court ruling does not automatically reinstate the charges against Zuma. A legal process involving state prosecuting authorities and the courts must reach a decision on whether to charge the president.