South African prosecutors have dropped corruption charges against ruling party leader Jacob Zuma. Zuma's African National Congress is widely expected to win an April 22 election and to choose him as president of the country.
AFP - The African National Congress declared victory Monday after South African prosecutors dropped charges against party leader Jacob Zuma, saying the case was a political ploy.
"This is a victory for the rule of law, decency and common sense," ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe told reporters.
"In the past eight years, Zuma has endured an ordeal never endured by anyone in this country, including being tried by the media," he said.
"The prosecution was a decision to frustrate Zuma from becoming president," Mantashe added.
Zuma is almost certain to become president after general elections on April 22, when the ANC is expected to again sweep to victory.
He has long denounced the case against him as a political conspiracy meant to thwart his presidential ambitions.
Prosecutors on Monday dropped the case after Zuma's lawyers presented wiretap recordings of top officials in the investigation who discussed how to coordinate the case around South Africa's political calendar.
But the prosecutors insisted their own work remained sound, noting that the decision not to go to trial was not a reflection of the merits of the case against Zuma.
Date created : 2009-04-06