Madonsela cries tears of joy as court throws the book at Zuma

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Mlambo said the president was aware that after the public protector's report, more allegations of state capture emerged and the matter remained in the public domain and required decisive action and resolution.

Mlambo was scathing of Zuma's persistence forging ahead with the legal action‚ even after a statement he made in his own answering affidavit that if Madonsela's report was finalised‚ it should be released‚ rendered the entire application baseless.

In October the Supreme Court of Appeal upheld an earlier decision by a lower court that the almost 800 corruption charges relating to an arms deal filed against Zuma before he became president in 2009 be reinstated. Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta and Zuma denied wrongdoing.

"The allegations. detailed in the report are extremely serious", Mlambo said.

Pretoria's High Court ordered Mr Zuma to set up a judicial inquiry, calling him "seriously reckless" for challenging recommendations by a watchdog in a case against him.

"Immediately after Polokwane [ANC elective conference in 2007], we pointed out that we couldn't continue to follow a leadership of a man who said the ANC is above the Constitution".

"That's why the president has consistently and persistently said the remedial action is unconstitutional and will not implement it, but take it on review", Semenya said.

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It has also ordered that the commission must wrap up in 180 days.

"The judgment lays out a timeline. we hope to get to the bottom of this", Maimane said, adding that his party would oppose any appeal in the case should Zuma launch one.

Her 355-page report, titled "State of Capture", stopped short of asserting that crimes had been committed, saying the watchdog lacked the resources to reach such conclusions and recommended that they be investigated by a judicial inquiry.

Zuma's appeal will focus on the "unconstitutionality" of the court shifting his powers to appoint the NPA head, yet he was able to perform other functions as President.

As yet Mr Zuma has not commented on the decision.

But as it stands, the president must now appoint a commission of inquiry into state capture within 30 days, and the judge presiding over the probe will be appointed by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.