It made no sense for decisions of the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) to be subject to review, while those of his juniors were not, the National Prosecuting Authority argued in the Supreme Court of Appeal.

Advocate Wim Trengove said that members of the NPA at "lower levels" were not subject to review when they reversed their own decisions and that it was "wholly illogical" for only the NDPP to be subject to review.

The NPA is seeking to have a Pietermaritzburg High Court ruling on September 12 by Judge Chris Nicholson overturned on appeal.

Nicholson ruled that the NPA's decision to charge Zuma was unlawful because he had not been allowed make representations to the NDPP before he was charged.

Zuma's legal team has claimed that the NDPP's decision to prosecute last year constituted the reversal of a previous decision, announced by former NPA boss Bulelani Ngcuka, not to prosecute.

They are claiming in terms of section 179(5) of the constitution, the NDPP needed to consult with a Director of Public Prosecutions.

The state has argued that the NDPP only needed to consult with a DPP when he was reversing that DPP's decision to not to prosecute.

Trengove argued that it made no sense for the NDPP to consult with a DPP when reversing his own decision.

"They (Zuma's legal team) say the purpose of the section is to protect the rights of the complainant. But only when the decision has been publicly announced.

"They say the purpose of the section is to protect the rights of the complainant."

He questioned why such protection was not applied to all DPP's and why it was not enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

"If they intended to do it, why put not put it in the bill of rights, where the rights of the accused are very exhaustively spelled out."

Referring to common law, he said: "Common law is quite emphatic in its reluctance to interfere in the decisions of the prosecution.

Zuma was facing a charge of racketeering, four charges of corruption, a charge of money laundering and 12 charges of fraud.

Former president Thabo Mbeki is expected to get 45 minutes to argue why he should be allowed to intervene in the battle between the NPA and Zuma or be admitted to the legal fray as a friend of the court.

Mbeki wants to be allowed to challenge Nicholson's inferences of political interference against him, which he claims led the ANC to recall him from his position as president of the country.

Zuma made a low key arrival with the sound of a single siren announcing his arrival, which went unnoticed by supporters gathered at Hertzog Square opposite the court building.

Dressed in a charcoal suit, blue shirt and tie, Zuma smiled as photographers rushed to get a picture of him before the hearing started at 9.45am.

Surrounded by bodyguards, Zuma commented on the large number of journalists gathered to see him before walking up the steps and disappearing into the court building.

Supporters started arriving in buses shortly after both legal teams arrived at the court.

Moments later Zuma entered Court One, was greeted by his legal team and took his seat next to his attorney Michael Hulley. - Sapa