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State Evidence Proves Nothing in Duduzane Zuma’s Trial, Says Defence


MARCH 26, 2019. Duduzane is seen at The Randburg Magistrates Court, in Johannesburg. "Former president Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane was in the dock on Tuesday in his culpable homicide trial relating to the 2014 death of Phumzile Dube, 30, when his Porsche collided with a minibus taxi.He heard on Tuesday that he will not have to answer for the death of Jeanette Mashaba, who died in hospital a few weeks after the crash on the M1 South highway near the Grayston Drive offramp." PHOTOGRAPH: ALON SKUY

Where is the evidence that former president Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane was negligent when he crashed into a minibus taxi in 2014?

That is what his lawyer Mike Hellens asked the Randburg magistrate’s court on Wednesday, after the state wrapped up its case into the crash on February 1 2014.

Hellens wants the court to discharge the case against Duduzane, because the state failed to show he was driving recklessly and that the witnesses failed to disprove the defence’s argument that the Porsche 911 Turbo, with four-wheel-drive, crashed due to it aquaplaning.

“What did they prove? Nothing. They proved it was a dark rainy night,” Hellens said.

“What happened? A bizarre accident. Because someone did something wrong? No.

“Where is the evidence that he drove recklessly? It’s not there.”

He concluded it would be “astonishing” to put a “tapestry” together with the “quilts” of evidence the case presented.

The court has adjourned for lunch.

 

 

State prosecutor Yusuf Baba will argue after lunch why the court should proceed with the case.

Zuma is facing one count of culpable homicide and one of negligent driving. Another charge of culpable homicide was dropped on Tuesday. Minibus taxi passengers Phumzile Dube and Jeanette Mashaba died following the crash. But state prosecutor Yusuf Baba told the court on Tuesday that the state consulted with a pathologist and Mashaba’s death was a result of a pre-existing condition and was not linked to the accident. She died in hospital in May that year.

Duduzane pleaded not guilty on Tuesday. He said in a statement, read out by his lawyer, that he lost control of his Porsche 911 Turbo after driving through a pool of water which he did not see due to the poor visibility from the rain.

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