Friday, 19 December 2008

"Go fot it, Boss!"

South African ANC leader Jacob Zuma is suing Jonathan Shapiro and the Sunday Times for 7-million Rand for a cartoon Shapiro made earlier this year. In the cartoon, Shapiro (who uses the name Zapiro) portrayed Zuma unbuckling his belt as he prepares to rape the figurative Lady Justice. She is held down by Zuma allies. one saying: “Go for it, boss!” Mr Zuma and Mr Shapiro confronted one another live on radio on Thursday morning, Dec 18. Mr Zuma said it is up to the courts to decide where a line needs to be drawn and whether the cartoon was a libelous act, or not.He said he decided to Mr Shapiro because: "Even in places where I've been found not guilty, he continues to find me guilty. He can't be right. He's totally out of order," said a firm Zuma at South Africa's Talk Radio 702. But Mr Shapiro called to the studio during the show and said Mr Zuma was paying "lip-service to freedom of expression". "I am a columnist, a visual columnist. I comment on what you do and what you say. And you are a public figure. You are the one with the power, not me," he declared. "And you just turn it on its head and act the victim." Mr Zuma, favourite to become president after general elections next year, has denied charges of graft, money-laundering and racketeering. Shapiro said he used Lady Justice to represent the South African judicial system, adding that the figure is recognised as a symbol of justice all over the world. In a letter Zuma (below, right) threatens to take the cartoonist to a South-African court if he does not pay Zuma 7 million Rand within 2 weeks.
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