Pietermaritzburg - Firmly convinced that the corruption case against former president Jacob Zuma is politically motivated, his supporters hurled insults at the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), calling them "dogs" while telling Police Minister Bheki Cele to "reign in his people to stop persecuting Zuma".
Singing outside the Pietermaritzburg High Court precinct on Monday, Sibusiso Ngcongo, led a group of about 50 supporters dressed in ANC regalia.
His chanting was laced with vulgarities and lasted about 3 minutes. He then started to insult the NPA.
"NPA, restrain your dogs and tell them to back off from Zuma," Ngcongo said.
Meanwhile, the organiser of the support march for Zuma, Bishop Vusi Dube, said their support should not be used to attack other ANC members.
"This support is solely for uBaba uMsholozi (Zuma) and we don't want people who will use it to attack other ANC members and public institutions. We condemn it," Dube said.
VIDEO: A group of people in #ANC T-shirts have just landed outside the #PietermaritzburgHighCourt singing hands off Zuma. Inside the court, #JacobZuma's high powered legal team is arguing that his corruption case should be permanently dropped as he won't get a fair trial. pic.twitter.com/42Hc0eNagW— Sihle Mavuso (@SANewsBot) May 20, 2019
Hundreds of supporters bussed from all corners of the province have started swarming the Freedom Park across the Pietermaritzburg High Court to hear from the former ANC leader during lunchtime.
A view of Freedom Park opposite the Pietermaritzburg High Court where about 5000 supporters of former President #JacobZuma are gathering as his top legal team led by Advocate Muzi Sikhakhane SC argues inside court that his corruption charges should be permanently dropped. @IOL pic.twitter.com/vBXk9AXbXn— Sihle Mavuso (@SANewsBot) May 20, 2019
As they slowly took up positions in the park, Zuma's lead advocate, Muzi Sikhakhane SC (Senior Counsel), started his legal assault against the State arguing that the case must be struck off the roll as it is tainted beyond redemption.
Seen with the supporters outside court was Zama Sokhabase, a member of the ANC Women's League in eThekwini. She stressed that she and other prominent members were there as individuals.
"We are here as individuals who are members of the ANC. That's all," she said when asked in what capacity she was in court.
David Dludla, a supporter of Zuma from Melmoth - a town neighbouring Nkandla - said he started supporting Zuma when the charges were first brought up in 2007. Dludla the drew attention of many people when he showed upcarrying a mock machine gun.
"We will never allow the case to proceed as Zuma will never get a fair trial. They were supposed to try him with Schabir Shaik " Dludla said.
David Dludla from Melmoth displaying his toy gun outside the court. He says he believes former President Jacob Zuma is innocent. pic.twitter.com/FvRDJyKkJN— Sihle Mavuso (@SANewsBot) May 20, 2019
Zuma is expected to address the over 5 000 supporters around 1pm when the hearing adjourn for a short lunch.