Jacob Zuma jailing: Violence spreads to South Africa's economic hub

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Jul 11, 2021, 09:16 PM(IST)

Violence in South Africa Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Jacob Zuma the former president of South Africa is currently in jail serving his 15-month jail term handed to him for contempt of court

Acts of violence by former South Africa president Jacob Zuma suporters spread to country's main economic hub on Sunday. Shops were looted  a section of the M2 highway was closed and stick-wielding protesters marched through the streets of Johannesburg.

Reuters reported saw a column of protesters carrying stick, golf clubs and marching through Johannesburg's Central Business District, where liquor stores had been burgled and shop windows smashed.

Jacob Zuma the former president of South Africa is currently in jail serving his 15-month jail term handed to him for contempt of court.

Zuma's sentencing and subsequent imprisonment have been seen as a test of the post-apartheid nation's ability to enforce the law fairly -- even against powerful politicians -- 27 years after the African National Congress (ANC) ousted the white minority rulers to usher in democracy.

But his incarceration has angered Zuma's supporters and exposed rifts within the ANC.

Police said criminals were taking advantage of the anger to steal and cause damage. National intelligence body NatJOINTS warned that those inciting violence could face criminal charges.

Zuma was given the jail term for defying an order from the constitutional court to give evidence at an inquiry that is investigating high-level corruption during his nine years in power until 2018.

He denies there was widespread corruption under his leadership but has refused to cooperate with the inquiry, which was was set up in his final weeks in office.

Zuma has challenged his sentence in the constitutional court, partly on the grounds of his alleged frail health and the risk of catching COVID-19. That challenge will be heard on Monday (July 12).

(With inputs from agencies)

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