Trial of South Africa’s ex-leader Zuma to resume August 10
South African ex-leader Jacob Zuma (Photo: SIMON MAINA/AFP/Getty Images).
THE long-running corruption trial of South Africa’s former president Jacob Zuma will resume on August 10, a judge ruled on Tuesday (20).
“The trial is adjourned to August 10 to 13,” Judge Piet Koen said during the hearing, news agency AFP reported.
The ruling came after Zuma sought to postpone the trial because of the pandemic and recent unrest.
Zuma’s foundation lauded the decision, tweeting, “The Constitution has prevailed at last!”
On Monday, Zuma appeared in court via video link from the prison, where he was jailed on July 8. He is serving a 15-month jail term for contempt of court.
On June 29, Zuma was sentenced for failing to appear at the corruption inquiry led by deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo in February.
After his jailing on July 8, the country witnessed chaos, with looting and rioting erupting in Zuma’s home region of KwaZulu-Natal before spreading to Johannesburg.
According to the authorities, 215 people were killed in the riots, and the total financial cost of the unrest could reach 50 billion rand (£2.5 billion), according to consultancy Intellidex.
Zuma, 79, faces 16 charges of fraud, graft and racketeering related to the 1999 purchase of fighter jets, patrol boats and equipment from five European arms firms when he was deputy president.
He is also accused of taking bribes from the French defence giant Thales, which has been charged with corruption and money laundering.
The trial started in May after numerous postponements and delays. He had proclaimed his innocence then.