'What have I done?' - Zuma asks as corruption trial begins

'What have I done?' - Zuma asks as corruption trial begins

'What have I done?' - Zuma asks as corruption trial begins

Photo: Former President Jacob Zuma appears at the Durban High Court on charges of corruption and fraud, 6 April 2018.

The Durban High Court adjourned until June 8 the case of corruption in a 2.5 billion arms deal dollars, filed against Zuma. He is accused of accepting bribes from French arms firm Thales via his financial adviser.

Mr Zuma believes the re-instatement of the charges which were dropped back in 2009, after reports of political interference, are once again politically motivated.

Businessman Siya Khoza said he admired Zuma's determination to bring in economic policies that he said were created to spread the wealth in what remains one of the world's most unequal societies. And now Mr Abrahams is leading the campaign to have Mr Zuma tried for the arms deal.

But numerous Zuma loyalists openly defied the order, waving ANC flags and wearing ANC shirts as they rallied enthusiastically for the former president who was forced to resign in February.

Reuters Police stand guard outside the court waiting for the arrival of Jacob Zuma in Durban.

Zuma also says he doesn't understand why he is facing the same charges that were dropped over 10 years ago.

Mabe said that Zuma was protected by the law and had a right to be considered innocent "unless proven otherwise".

The former South African president gave the thumbs up during the 90-minute court appearance to supporters who were waving and smiling at him throughout.

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The Zuma of old is still here - the crowd pleaser, the charmer and tactical politician.

Wearing a dark suit with a red tie, Zuma was greeted by the low chant of "Zuma!"

This was after the ruling African National Congress party forced Zuma from office in February largely due to his mounting legal challenges and multiple corruption scandals.

Since then Zuma has been replaced as President by Cyril Ramaphosa.

Zuma said the charges were reinstated for political reasons.

Zane Mlaba, a local ANC activist, described party leaders who called on members not to rally around Zuma "traitors".

"Radical Economic Transformation agenda is under attack inside the ANC and him being as a symbolic representative of the agenda is being attacked through the judiciary", he said.

The case is unlikely to be heard before the end of this year, according to legal experts, given Mr Zuma is challenging the decision to prosecute him.

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