Zuma corruption case adjourned by South African court

Former president faces 16 charges in relation to $2.5bn arms deal in 1990s

Former South African president Jacob Zuma in the dock of the Pietermaritzburg High Court at the hearing of his corruption case on July 27th, 2018. Photograph: Phill Magakoephill Magakoe/AFP/Getty

Former South African president Jacob Zuma in the dock of the Pietermaritzburg High Court at the hearing of his corruption case on July 27th, 2018. Photograph: Phill Magakoephill Magakoe/AFP/Getty

 

South Africa’s former president Jacob Zuma appeared at the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Friday on corruption charges relating to a $2.5 billion arms deal in the late 1990s, but a judge adjourned the case to November 30th.

Zuma, who appeared in court in a dark suit and red tie, faces 16 charges of fraud, racketeering and money laundering relating to a deal to buy European military hardware to upgrade South Africa’s armed forces after the end of apartheid in 1994.

The case is a rare example of an African leader being held to account for his actions. Zuma, who was ousted by the ruling party in February, denies any wrongdoing.

His lawyer Mike Hellens asked the judge to allow the former president’s legal team to file a permanent stay of prosecution against the charges.

Judge Mjabuliseni Madondo said the defence should have adequate time to prepare that application.

The state will then give its response to the application on November 30th.

– Reuters