Former President Jacob Zuma addresses supporters after appearing at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture in Johannesburg. Picture: Reuters/Mike Hutchings

Johannesburg - Former president Jacob Zuma on Friday used his final address after his appearance at the commission of inquiry into state capture to warn those who continue to antagonise him to "be very careful".

Zuma was addressing supporters following his final appearance for the week before the commission, headed by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo. 

The former president appeared before the commission for almost the entire week where most of the proceedings were characterised by accusations that the commission had brought Zuma in "under false pretences" and was attempting to cross-examine him, something it had not applied for. 

Matters took a dramatic turn on Friday morning where the former president announced his intention to withdraw from the proceedings, retracting at the last minute following an intervention from Zondo. 

Zuma, addressing supporters outside the commission, spoke on a range of issues, including his earlier claims of a continued narrative to assassinate his character. 

Zuma on Monday had detailed the genesis of a supposed campaign to "assassinate his character" and remove him from the scene, allegedly hatched by three intelligence organisations.

"They've worked all these years to implement this plan," Zuma told supporters on Friday. 

"I even explained the coming into being of this very commission, as I was connecting the dots. But I also thought to say things I normally shy away from because I realise that perhaps the time has come for us to do so."

Zuma went on to detail this alleged plot to supporters, stressing that even the formation and name of the commission was part of the narrative aimed at getting rid of him. 

"The manner in which this commission was named... there was a need to create a narrative about Zuma as a corrupt person and from time to time, those who were doing certain things kept on enhancing this narrative.

Zuma used the final part of his speech to address those who continued speaking ill of him, especially regarding his relationship with the controversial Gupta family, saying "enough is enough".  

He said his warning did not come from a place of bitterness and anger, but rather one of provocation.  

"All I'm saying is people must be very careful. When I say I will tell things about them they think I don't know, I mean it.

"If people want me to uproot them, I will," he said to rousing applause.

IOL