Zuma's lawyer breaks down

Advocate bursts into tears while arguing the president's rights have been violated.

Police monitor protesters outside the South Gauteng High Court. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - President Jacob Zuma's lawyer broke down in tears while arguing that the president's dignity was infringed by 'The Spear' painting.

Advocate Gcina Malindi discussed how some people were pleased with South Africa's transition to democracy, but others were not.

He then broke down and cried.

The three judges were forced to adjourn proceedings in the South Gauteng High Court.

Malindi discussed how some people were receiving basic services for the very first time.

Earlier, he argued that a ruling in Zuma's favour would be important for his dignity.

The advocate said Zuma only has dignity in his personal capacity and not as the president of South Africa.

Zuma launched the application to have a portrait removed from Rosebank's Goodman Gallery and the City Press website.

Brett Murray's controversial painting shows Zuma with his genitals exposed.

The zipper is a prominent feature in the picture, which has been painted on a scrap piece of wood.

Outside court, Zuma supporters have put up their own portrait of the president and may said the artwork was a violation of privacy and respect.

They also want Murray's image banned from all social networking sites.