Jonathan Shapiro, South Africa's leading editorial cartoonist who publishes in different newspapers four times a week, has decided to remove the trademark shower he has placed atop South African President Jacob Zuma's head in his cartoon depictions of him.

"I thought I will take stock of where we are and give the presidency a chance to get going," Shapiro told the South African Press Association.

"Despite my misgivings about Zuma and despite my belief that it was wrong for the ANC [African National Congress] to have him as its presidential candidate, we all have to take stock of the reality that he is president of the country."

Shapiro, who goes by the pen name Zapiro, first started using the shower head back in 2006 after Zuma revealed during his rape trial that he had sex with an HIV positive woman, and showered afterwards to "minimise" the risk of infection.

Zuma is currently suing Shapiro for $712,300 (£464,200) for damage to his reputation and his dignity for a cartoon depicting him unbuckling his belt as he prepares to rape the figurative Lady Justice.

She is held down by Zuma allies Julius Malema, Gwede Mantashe, Blade Nzimande and Zwelinzima Vavi.

Shapiro said that neither the legal actions by Zuma nor other political pressure he has received caused him to remove the shower, adding that it would return if the president did not measure up.

"If he doesn't perform or things go wrong it will wang [sic] back on his head," Shapiro said.

View more of Jonathan Shapiro's cartoons here.