Though he was forced out of office by his own party in 2018, the African National Congress (ANC), he retains a loyal body of supporters, especially in his home province of KwaZulu-Natal.
Zuma was once an illustrious political figure, who was jailed for fighting the racist system of apartheid in South Africa.
Now, he has been arrested for being contemptuous of South Africa’s most senior judges – the guardians of the democracy he fought for – as he tried to evade accountability over the deluge of corruption allegations he faced during his presidency.
It is an ignominious end to Zuma’s political career, but a proud moment for South Africa’s democracy. It shows that no one is above the law – not even a former president.
His supporters threatened to block any attempt by police to arrest him, but in the end they did not have to. The 79-year-old surrendered, knowing he could not defeat the might of the state.