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Friday, 11 October 2019

Ex-South African President Jacob Zuma to face corruption trial related to $2.5bn deal

Former South African president Jacob Zuma will face trial for corruption.

The 77-year-old, who was president from 2009 to 2018, is accused of taking bribes from a French arms manufacturer relating to a $2.5bn (£1.78bn) deal in the 1990s which took place while he was deputy president.

The charges were raised more than a decade ago but were dropped. They were reinstated when the National Prosecuting Authority announced there were sufficient grounds to bring him to trial.
Zuma denies any wrongdoing and had applied for a permanent stay of prosecution from 16 charges of fraud, racketeering and money laundering relating to the deal.
He was forced to step down as leader last year following different corruption allegations.
The former president's legal team argued his court case has been prejudiced by long delays as well as alleging there has been political interference in the decision to bring charges.
Zuma can appeal Friday's ruling and has not made a statement so far.
The trial is expected to start on 15 October.
His successor, President Cyril Ramaphosa, made tackling corruption a key policy.

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