A small group of organisers representing groups supporting former President Jacob Zuma have gathered outside the High Court in Pietermaritzburg ahead of his court appearance on Wednesday.
There were expectations of a night vigil on Tuesday night, but the court precinct has been locked down.
The court is expected to hear Zuma’s special plea in a bid to seek the recusal of lead state prosecutor, Advocate Billy Downer.
Zuma and his co-accused French arms manufacturer Thales will return to court for the long-awaited trial on charges of corruption, fraud, money laundering and racketeering in connection with the controversial 1990s arms deal.
At the last court appearance, suspended ANC secretary general, Ace Magashule, called for pro- Zuma supporters to travel in their numbers to Pietermaritzburg.
One of the organisers of Zuma’s supporters, Bishop Vusi Dube, says buses and taxis full of the former President’s supporters from across the country are on their way to KwaZulu-Natal.
Dube was speaking to SABC News outside the court. He says despite the large numbers that are expected to converge on the court precinct, they will try to adhere to COVID-19 protocols.
“We really appreciate every element of support of the people who have stood up with the President Jacob Zuma. Yes indeed tomorrow we are expecting a lot of support of people who are going to come to this place but at the same time we are quite aware that we live under the regulations of COVID-19 so that is the reason we have brought such a huge stage so that people are clattered around so they will spread all around.
We have prepared ourselves originally for 500 people I must say but it looks like we are going to be a little bit over that number and we are going to be very conscious of that the numbers are growing we will follow all regulations,” adds Dube.
Dube says any ANC leader who arrives to show their support to former President Zuma – like suspended ANC secretary general Ace Magashule – does so in their personal capacity.