Jacob Zuma to be prosecuted on corruption charges

Jacob Zuma to be prosecuted on corruption charges
Jacob Zuma

Former South African President Jacob Zuma will be charged with 16 counts of corruption, money laundering and racketeering, the country’s national prosecuting authority announced Friday.

The charges relate to 783 questionable payments Zuma allegedly received in connection with a controversial multi-billion-rand arms deal.

On Friday, National Director of Public Prosecutions Shaun Abrahams said that there are “reasonable prospects of a successful prosecution” in Zuma’s case.

Zuma, known as the “Teflon President” for his ability to survive repeated scandals through the years, stepped down in February amid a slew of corruption allegations. He has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

In 2016, South Africa’s top court ruled that Zuma had acted unconstitutionally when he used $15 million in public funds to upgrade his private home, and ordered him to repay some of the money.

Zuma, 75, served as deputy President to Thabo Mbeki for six years before helping orchestrate a putsch against him.

At the end of 2007, Zuma beat Mbeki to become the leader of the African National Congress and was elected President in 2009. He was re-elected in 2014.