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Zuma’s son a no-show at court

Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma's son, Duduzane, has failed to appear in court on Tuesday morning over a formal inquest to determine if he was criminally responsible for the death of a young woman.

Zuma was meant to arrive at the Randburg Magistrate's Court on Tuesday morning for the finalisation of the inquest that arose out of an accident in February that involved Duduzane's silver Porsche Sedan.

President Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane. File picture: Chris Collingridge. Credit: INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

However, State prosecutor Yusuf Baba told the court on Tuesday morning that Duduzane's lawyer, Pieter van der Merwe had contacted the investigating officer to inform the State that Duduzane said he had only found out about the court proceedings on Tuesday morning. However, Baba insisted that a subpoena had been issued to Duduzane's legal representative on 25 July.

Duduzane had been driving his Porsche on the Grayston Drive offramp on 1 February this year, and collided with a white minibus taxi. Two passengers in the vehicle suffered critical injuries, while 30-year-old Phumzile Dube, died from her injuries.

Dube's family appeared upset on Tuesday morning after hearing the president's son was late for proceedings, but have so far not spoken with the media.

Baba refused to arrange a postponement date for proceedings, choosing to stand the matter down until Duduzane's lawyer could come to court to explain his absence.

He told the court that all of the witnesses for the inquest had paid money and travelled far to attend, and he could not ethically stand the matter down without a proper response from Duduzane's defence.

However, the court also heard that one of the other people injured in the crash, Jeanette Mashaba, had also passed away since the incident. However, Baba said investigators were still trying to determine if she had passed away from complications related to the injuries she sustained in the crash.

The court has been informed that van der Merwe will be appearing on Duduzane's behalf before noon.

Updated 2pm: Removed reference to Zuma's incorrect age. 

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