Former President Jacob Zuma arriving at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture in Parktown. Picture: Simphiwe Mbokazi/African News Agency(ANA)

Johannesburg - Veteran journalist Redi Tlhabi has applied to the state capture commission of inquiry to cross-examine ex-president Jacob Zuma over his testimony that she was a spy involved in a film production about the former president's rape trial.

In a letter to the commission posted on Twitter, Tlhabi's legal representatives at Webber Wentzel law firm said she denies Zuma's allegations against her.

"The allegations create the impression that our client has been instructed by foreign agents to disseminate negative propaganda against Mr Zuma. As a result of these allegations, our client has suffered and continues to suffer harm to her reputation as a respected and trusted journalist and media commentator."

During his much-anticipated testimony last week, the former president told the commission that there have been attempts to kill him and that spies were used to plotting his downfall. He said the media was also used to create a "negative narrative" about him.

"As part of this narrative there is a film being made about the rape case where I was acquitted. A journalist in South Africa, Redi Tlhabi is doing that. It has been done outside the country, portraying Zuma as a rapist to fit the narrative. The name of the movie is 'Raped by Power'. I asked myself where do people get ideas that Zuma is guilty," he told the commission, chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

The lawyers said their client wanted to quiz the former president in order to counter allegations he made before the commission.

Zuma was accused of raping the late Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo in 2005. He stood trial and was acquitted by the Johannesburg High Court in 2006. 

Tlhabi penned a book titled 'Khwezi: the remarkable story of Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo', which was released in 2017, a year before Kuzwayo's death.

African News Agency (ANA)