Profession: President of South Africa
Why Famous: Jacob Zuma rose from a poor background to become one of South Africa's most prominent freedom fighters in the Apartheid era. He rose further to become President of South Africa 2009-2018 before allegations of corruption forced him from office.
A member of the ANC since the age of 17, Zuma was jailed for ten years in 1963 and went into exile afterwards. He returned to South Africa in 1990 and served as Deputy Prime Minister 1999-2005 before he was dismissed by President Thabo Mbeki. His tussle with Mbeki continued when he replaced him as head of the ANC in 2007 and Zuma went on to win the 2009 general election.
Zuma's presidency was marred by a number of controversies, he was accused of rape in 2005 but later acquitted. He was also held to have misappropriated state funds for expensive improvements to his private home in Nkandla.
Zuma was replaced as head of the ANC in 2017 by Cyril Ramaphosa and resigned the presidency to avoid a no confidence vote in early 2018. In 2021 Zuma became the first former president to be convicted in court for contempt of court, for failing to appear before the Zondo Commission on corruption. Zuma's imprisonment sparked days of violent deadly riots in various cities across South Africa.
- 2009-05-09 Jacob Zuma is sworn in as President of South Africa
- 2017-08-08 South African President Jacob Zuma survives a no-confidence vote in parliament 198-177
- 2017-12-18 South Africa's ANC selects Cyril Ramaphosa as leader, to succeed President Jacob Zuma
- 2018-02-13 South African President Jacob Zuma is ordered to step down by the A.N.C.
- 2018-02-14 South African President Jacob Zuma resigns from office
- 2018-02-15 Cyril Ramaphosa is sworn in as South African President, replacing Jacob Zuma
- 2021-06-29 Former South African President Jacob Zuma sentenced to 15 months in prison on contempt of court charges
- 2021-07-13 337 die in violent protests and looting in South Africa following the jailing of Jacob Zuma, with more than 200 shopping malls set alight