Jacob Zuma is the President of the African National Congress (ANC) – South Africa’s governing political party. Following his party’s victory in the 2009 general election, he was elected by parliament as the President of South Africa. He was the Deputy President of South Africa from 1999 until 2005.
Zuma has faced many legal troubles, including various corruption charges mostly stemming from a bribery investigation into South Africa’s largest arms buying deal, which led to the conviction and imprisonment of Zuma’s financial advisor, Schabir Shaik, on corruption and fraud charges in 2005. Zuma was subsequently dismissed from his position as Deputy President by then-President Thabo Mbeki. Zuma was also the target of a rape allegation made by a family friend, although he was later acquitted.
Zuma formally joined the ANC in 1959 and became an active member of Umkhonto we Sizwe – the armed wing of the ANC, co-founded by Nelson Mandela in 1962. After being arrested and convicted of conspiring to overthrow the Apartheid government in 1963, he was sentenced to 10 years of imprisonment which he served alongside Nelson Mandela and other ANC leaders at Robben Island.