May 26, 2021

South Africa: Zuma Appears in Court

Former South African president, Jacob Zuma, is expected to appear in court this morning, Wednesday 26 May, after several delays.

The 79-year-old politician has infamously quipped on multiple occasions that he “wants his day in court” since he was first implicated on corruption allegations relating to the country’s 1990 arms deal.

Now, his day has arrived, and is predicted to appear at the Pietermaritzburg High Court in KwaZulu-Natal to face charges of fraud and racketeering. A major allegation revolves around his accepting an annual bribe of half a million rand from French company, Thales, to block any investigations into the aforementioned arms procurement.

The road to this court appearance has been fraught with postponements and legal wrangling – his team’s “Stalingrad approach” – in order to prevent his being prosecuted. Mr Zuma claims that he is a victim of a clandestine political campaign to see him ruined.

Many political commentators believe that the trial will mark a significant event for the country’s justice system, as many have condemned Mr Zuma’s tenure as state head as “wasted years”.

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