In Summary
  • Zuma was elected president by parliament on May 6, 2009 after the party's victory at general elections.
  • Zuma sacked his finance minister and rival Pravin Gordhan in a cabinet purge on March 2017.

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma, in power since 2009, resigned on Wednesday after being under pressure to quit before the official end of his term in mid-2019.

Here are some of the key dates of his presidency.

2009: First Zulu president

As the leader of the majority African National Congress, Zuma is elected president by parliament on May 6, 2009 after the party's victory at general elections.

South Africa's first Zulu president, he is sworn in three days later.

Zuma became ANC leader in late 2007, ousting ex-president Thabo Mbeki, who had fired him as vice president two years earlier following corruption accusations.

Jacob Zuma

In this file photo taken on April 19, 2009, then presidential favourite Jacob Zuma (right) dances at an African National Congress rally in Johannesburg. PHOTO | ALEXANDER JOE | AFP

2012: Marikana massacre

In August 2012 police shoot dead 34 striking miners in the northern town of Marikana, in the worst violence involving the security forces since the end of apartheid.

The massacre shocks South Africa and shakes confidence in the nation's post-racial settlement in a turning point for Zuma's government.

It sparks a violent wave of strikes in the mines in which around 60 are killed.

In a sign of his waning popularity, Zuma is booed at a memorial service for Nelson Mandela in 2013.

South African President Jacob Zuma

South African President Jacob Zuma delivers a speech during an ANC (African National Congress) political meeting in Soweto on May 15, 2011. PHOTO | STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN | AFP

2016: Corruption allegations

Re-elected by parliament in 2014 after the ANC wins general elections, Zuma suffers a serious setback on March 2016 when South Africa's top court says he flouted the constitution and used public funds to upgrade his private residence.

He agrees to pay back some of the money.

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