Johannesburg - Hundreds of supporters of former president Jacob Zuma marched about four kilometres from Johannesburg's Zoo lake to Pieter Roos Park, near to where the commission of inquiry into state capture hearings featuring the former head of state was taking place on Monday.
Members of the Congress of South African Students, Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association and African National Congress came out in their numbers to support Zuma at the inquiry in Parktown, Johannesburg.
Steve Maphumulo, 75, from Soweto, said they have been with Zuma from the start and they were not going to leave him now.
“Since Zuma was the president, he never had peace. He has been accused of many things but there is no proof, we support him because we know he is innocent,” said Maphumulo.
Maphumulo said they were not happy about the way Zuma was being treated. “This is the first president to be on the State Capture Inquiry. It has never happened before, why?”
“We want these people to keep their hands off our president and leave him alone because they have failed in everything they tried to make him look bad,” said Maphumulo.
Another Zuma supporter, a woman from Mpumalanga who gave her name only as Angie, added that they will support Zuma because he has been with them all the way, and had never suffered when he was still president.
"Zuma knows how to treat other people, we believe he was the best president ever in the country and we believe in people like Zuma," said Angie.
She said they were not believing all the lies that have been spread about Zuma.
Many of the devoted Zuma supporters were clad in yellow t-shirts with the words "Wenzeni u Zuma", meaning what has Zuma done?, written on them.
The crowd sang struggles songs as they waited for Zuma, in the expectation that he would address them later in the day.
Earlier, members of the Black First Land First who also came to support Zuma were denied access to the venue but they were later allowed entry.
The supporters said they will be at the inquiry for the entire week as Zuma is scheduled to be on the stand until Friday.
African News Agency (ANA)