South African President Jacob Zuma says there was "no undue or improper influence" in a government arms deal in the late 1990s.
Zuma, who had once been implicated in the allegations around the Strategic Arms Procurement Package, usually known simply as "the arms deal," made the announcement Thursday on national television. He said an independent commission found "not a single iota of evidence" that any of the officials involved in the deal accepted any bribes.
Zuma was accused in 2005 of some 780 charges of corruption related to the deal. The charges were withdrawn three years later, and Zuma, who had been fired as deputy to President Thabo Mbeki, became head of the African National Congress and was elected president in 2009.
Earlier this month, South Africa's parliament opened debate on whether to impeach President Zuma over a Constitutional Court ruling that he failed to repay public funds that were used to make improvements on his private home.