South Africa's ruling party has defeated a no-confidence vote against President Jacob Zuma, who also faced a court challenge from an opposition party that wants corruption charges to be reinstated against him.

The parliamentary motion against Zuma on Tuesday followed increasing criticism of the president on a range of issues, including a scandal over millions of dollars in state spending on his private home.

The ruling African National Congress, which has a majority in parliament, defeated the motion brought by the Democratic Alliance, the biggest opposition party.

Separately, an opposition lawyer argued in a Pretoria court that prosecutors were wrong to drop fraud and other charges against Zuma in 2009. Zuma says the decision to drop the charges was sound and efforts to revive the case are politically motivated.