A judge-led commission of inquiry has exonerated South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma from facing more than 700 charges of corruption and racketeering related to the biggest purchase of arms after apartheid ended in 1994.

The commission – chaired by Justice Willie Seriti – found no evidence of bribery in the deal, after a four-year investigation.

In 2005, Mr Zuma was sacked as deputy president after his financial adviser Schabir Shaik was found guilty of trying to solicit bribes for him from a French arms company.

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Mr Zuma always denied any wrongdoing, and criminal charges against him were dropped.

After he became president in 2009, he appointed a commission to investigate the arms deal.

At a press briefing earlier today, Mr Zuma said there was no credible evidence placed before the inquiry to prove the multi-billion dollar deal was dodgy.

This is despite the fact that some crucial witnesses refused to testify at the commission, describing it as a whitewash.

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