Jacob Zuma Tax

Photo: Gallo Images/Volksblad/Mlungisi Louw

Zuma corruption trial postponed to 9 September because of hospitalisation

The Pretoria High Court agreed to postpone Jacob Zuma’s corruption trial on Tuesday. A medical report must be submitted to the court by 20 August.

Jacob Zuma Tax

Photo: Gallo Images/Volksblad/Mlungisi Louw

The Pietermaritzburg High Court postponed former President Jacob Zuma and French arms company, Thales Group’s, corruption trial until 9 September on Tuesday morning, 10 August. This comes after Zuma was hospitalised for medical reasons unknown on Friday.


Zuma and Thales face charges of corruption, racketeering, money laundering and fraud in what has become known as the “Arms Deal” case.

Zuma’s legal team requested the postponement of the case for medical reasons, Judge Piet Koen said the matter would be postponed to 9 and 10 September. However, a medical report about Zuma’s fitness to stand trial must be submitted to the KwaZulu-Natal court by 20 August at the latest.

“The matter is postponed to 9 and 10 September 2021,” ordered Koen. “The medical report in respect of Mr Zuma is to be delivered by not later than 20 August 2021.”

The judge also said that the State might appoint its own doctor to examine Zuma and assess his fitness for trial. The selected doctor may be summoned to court to testify on their findings, if necessary. He is currently serving a jail term of 15 months for contempt of court after refusing to appear before the State Capture Inquiry.

Zuma initially pled not guilty to all the charges brought against him in the arms deal case and since then proceedings have been delayed by a series of applications. Zuma and his legal team insist that state prosecutor Billy Downer should be removed from the trial because they claim he is “politically compromised.”

Were it not for the hospitalisation, the Pietermaritzburg would have heard the argument against Downer on Tuesday. On Monday, 9 August, the Office of the Chief Justice, said the matter, which was supposed to be heard in open court, would be taking place virtually.