Court delays Zuma trial

Feb. 5, 2009 at 8:38 PM
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JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- A South African court has postponed the corruption trial for African National Congress leader Jacob Zuma until after upcoming elections.

The delay could allow Zuma to become president without being tried, The Telegraph reports. If the ANC wins the election, as it is expected to, and Zuma is elected to parliament and chosen president, he is expected to have the case against him quashed.

If he had been tried and convicted before the election, he would be barred from running. The trial is now set for August.

Zuma insists that he is innocent, that the charges against him are political and that he wants to stand trial. But Helen Zille, of the Democratic Alliance, said Zuma "has done everything to avoid his day in court in order to gain the power of the presidency".

"I am not going to step aside simply because I have not been found guilty by any court of law," Zuma said outside the courthouse. "What has happened to me is that certain people have thrown this dark cloud to me with the aim of demonizing me."

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