S.Africa's ousted President Jacob Zuma charged with graft

South Africa: Jacob Zuma due in court to face corruption charges

South Africa court adjourns Zuma corruption case

The adviser, Schabir Shaikh, was found guilty of trying to solicit the bribes and was jailed in 2005.The case against Mr Zuma was dropped shortly before he ran for president in 2009.

However, the opponents of the ex-South African leader think that the court trial is long overdue.

Zuma, whose presidency was marked by scandals, says he has not done anything wrong.

Zuma was composed in the dock wearing a dark suit, white shirt and red tie as about 1,000 cheering supporters rallied outside to protest against the prosecution that has deepened political divisions. But while he has succeeded in pushing Mr. Zuma out of office, the ANC remains badly divided between a business-friendly moderate faction and a left-wing pro-Zuma faction that supports the seizure of white-owned farmland and greater black ownership of the economy.

"I don't think we will see Zuma's criminal trial start or reach a conclusion this year", said William Booth, the head of the South African Law Society's criminal division.

Ramaphosa has said that, under the agreement, Zuma will have to reimburse the state if he eventually loses the case.

After his court appearance, a pugnacious Zuma addressed thousands of supporters gathered near the courthouse.

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

Aside from the local supporters from his home province who turned up in full ANC regalia, only a handful of senior party leaders took the opportunity to publicly back their comrade and former commander-in-chief.

One of the march organisers, Bishop Bheki Ngcobo of the National Interfaith Council of South Africa, said he was behind Zuma because he supported radical economic transformation (RET).

Mr Zuma's legal team and lawyers for the state agreed to the postponement to give both sides time to prepare their submissions relating to charges against Mr Zuma including fraud, racketeering and money laundering.

Zuma's successor as president Cyril Ramaphosa has vowed to crack down on government corruption, which he has admitted is a serious problem.

Zuma said he was being treated like a prisoner, even by the people he trusted and that just because he was charged did not mean he was guilty. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) reinstated the corruption charges last month.

In February, Mr Zuma resigned following intense pressure from the ANC party.

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