Thousands of Jacob Zuma supporters marched to the high court in Durban in support of the former president on Friday. The president arrived 10 minutes before the trial was scheduled to start at 9am.
There was a sea of ANC supporters wearing the colours of the party Zuma was once the leader and there were various banners and placards displayed with some titled "Zuma is a RET champion", "this is a corrupt court", as the police presence, armed with riot gear and shields were preparing for the ruckus atmosphere.
Zuma is making his first court appearance on 16 charges, including fraud and corruption, on Friday.
Police officers were out in full force as between 2,000 and 5,000 people are expected at the King Dinizulu Park in Durban before marching to the high court. Former SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng arrived in court in support of Zuma.
[LIVE BLOG] Whistles, ululations, dancing and singing as Jacob Zuma supporters march to the Durban high court for Zuma to answer to allegations of fraud & corruption. Follow EWN's blog for rolling updates.https://t.co/ttasIZgwnY#ZumaMarches#ZumaChargespic.twitter.com/ouR9eRBORE— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) April 6, 2018
Zuma's son Edward was in attendance, as well as ANC member Carl Niehaus, with BLF leader Andile Mngxitama and the Pro-Zuma (Hands Off Msholozi) camp out in support of their former leader. There were whistles, ululations, dancing, singing and jeers ahead of Zuma's appearance.
#ZumaCharges The hundreds of Zuma supporters have now arrived outside the DBN High Court. The Mthwalume Brass band is playing their own adaptation of JZ's signature song "Awuleth'umshini wami." ZN pic.twitter.com/j6xhzLreKa— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) April 6, 2018
Religious leaders were outside the court waiting to pray for the former president. Zuma's supporters gathered on Thursday night under the ANC banner to hold a vigil in his honour.