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Zuma finally gets his day in court as trial to get under way

On Friday, a full bench of judges dismissed his application for a permanent stay of prosecution, saying he failed to prove to the court that there are no reasonable and probable grounds for his successful prosecution.

The crowd who gathered to support former President Jacob Zuma is seen reflected in his glasses as he waits to speak after appearing on corruption charges at the Durban High Court on 6 April 2018. Picture: Ihsaan Haffejee/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Former President Jacob Zuma will be back in the dock on Tuesday with his corruption trial expected to start in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrates Court.

On Friday, a full bench of judges dismissed his application for a permanent stay of prosecution, saying he failed to prove to the court that there were no reasonable and probable grounds for his successful prosecution.

WATCH: Court rules that Jacob Zuma must stand trial for corruption

The former president faces charges of corruption, money laundering and racketeering linked to the multi-billion rand arms deal.

He previously argued for the case to be struck off the roll, saying the charges were politically motivated and that the unreasonable delays in prosecuting him have prejudiced him.

Zuma has always said he wanted his day in court and that day has finally arrived.

The former president will have an opportunity to clear his name in the Pietermaritzburg High Court as he answers to 16 charges on over 700 counts of corruption, fraud, racketeering and money laundering.

But if the events of the past decade are anything to go buy, the trial may not start on Tuesday.

Zuma may launch an application for leave to appeal Friday’s judgment and if the judges refuse to grant him this, he may approach a higher court. But this will come at a financial cost to him.

After all, he told the court earlier this year he was unable to pay his lawyers. Zuma was also ordered by a court of law to pay back more than R16 million spent by the State on his prosecution related cases.

The former president may use what’s become known as his Stalingrad strategy, but the reality is his options to avoid prosecution are slowly running out.

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