Former president Jacob Zuma. File picture Leon Lestrade/African News Agency (ANA).

Johannesburg - The State has spent close to R17 million funding former president Jacob Zuma's legal bills, according to the justice department’s recalculated figures.  

This amount is an amendment from the R15.3 million that was revealed by President Cyril Ramaphosa in Parliament earlier this year. 

The amendment amount was revealed in an affidavit summited by the director-general in the Presidency Dr. Cassius Lubisi to the North Gauteng High Court.

The changes follow a department of justice investigation into the exact amount spent on Zuma's legal fees, which now totals to R16 788 781. 

Ramaphosa revealed in Parliament that the state has been funding Zuma’s legal costs since 2006, following Zuma's request that his legal bills be funded by the State. 

Of the total amount spent, R7.5 million was spent in the period between 2006 and the withdrawal of the charges and another R7.8 million was spent since 2009, Ramaphosa told Parliament. 

Lubisi's affidavit forms part of the DA's legal challenge to review and set aside the deal struck between the Presidency and Zuma. The case is expected to be heard in November. 

The party also wants the court to force Zuma to pay back the millions already spent on his legal fees.

Ramaphosa is a respondent in the DA court matter and has filed papers indicating that he would abide by the decision taken by the court and would not oppose the matter.

But the Presidency has said that it would continue to fund Zuma's legal bills until a court had ruled otherwise. 

Zuma is currently facing 16 charges of corruption, fraud, money laundering, and racketeering, linked to 783 payments that he allegedly received from arms manufacturer Thales as a bride to for the company to be awarded the contract to supply arms system combat to the SA defence force. 

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