The man allegedly responsible for the fire in parliament appeared in court. Zandile Christmas Mafe, 49 from Khayelitsha, Cape Town was arrested on allegations of arson related to Sunday’s fire at parliament.
Zandile is charged with housebreaking, theft, arson, and further charges under the National Key Point Act.
Mafe has rejected all charges.
Magistrate Zamekile Mbalo postponed the hearing to 11 January 2022 to allow for further investigations.
Spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority in the Western Cape, Eric Ntabazalila, said the State investigators needed to confirm certain information, such as the suspect’s residential address and whether he has assets.
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Social media users also had an opinion about the alleged arrest. While some believe that a homeless- looking man is not capable, others think he is innocent.
Even Minister Fikile Mbalula had something to say abut the arrest.
I agree with you Motloung he can all what police must do is to prove it in court why they link him directly to the arson. I have seen it in my portfolio were trains were burneddown by vagrants/ homeless people i kno the modus operandi. https://t.co/qxk2p4dASM— FIKILE MBALULA | MR FIX (@MbalulaFikile) January 4, 2022
Alleged arsonist Zandile Mafe was said to be in possession of an explosive device.— Alex Sweet Patrick (@IamAlexSweet) January 4, 2022
I would be interested to hear from him – why was he intent on destroying parliament? And was he put up to it by a third party?
Why would a" vagrant" wakeup and burndown parliament?— FIKILE MBALULA | MR FIX (@MbalulaFikile) January 4, 2022
If they say this man, Zandile Mafe knew Parliament Protection officers were not on duty, that nobody was monitoring CCTV cameras, knew water sprinklers were turned off, then the man must be appointed head of Parliamentary Protection Services or Intelligence Operative. Klaar!! pic.twitter.com/pQChkzGvXa— Bra Hloni (@HonourableHloni) January 4, 2022
Minister De Lille confirmed the CCTV cameras were working Sunday morning. We would like to see video evidence of Zandile Mafe in the parliament precinct and also starting the fire that destroyed parliament. Something doesn’t add up here and we can’t keep quiet. pic.twitter.com/Sm59FWgKy1— Vuyo Zungula MP 🇿🇦 (@ZungulaVuyo) January 4, 2022
We cant allow the ANC to make a sacrifice of this poor person.. Zandile Mafe is absolutely innocent— Former Kleva Black🇿🇦 🇿🇦 (@SneKhumaloSA) January 4, 2022
Mr Zandile Mafe is the alleged arsonist in the #ParliamentFire and he appeared in court today? Mr Mafe is a homeless man.— Mr. J Mighti (@MightiJamie) January 4, 2022
Social media users are questioning if he has the sophisticated knowledge of arson displayed by the extent of the damage. #Scapegoat is trending. pic.twitter.com/LsdxapnX9C
This is the homeless guy Zandile Mafe who orchestrated burning of RSA parliament 😂 …they say he disabled cctv footage, had explosives blah blah blah only fools will believe this gov they failed to service it as they have done with Eskom,Prasa,sanral and etc this is their fault. pic.twitter.com/XVxSAcJ4Cm— Simon_Pela (@Simon_Pela) January 4, 2022
The lawyer representing Zandile Mafe who is accused of burning parliament is connected to The EFF. Zandile is unemployed but is using the services of private attorneys. The lawyer even alluded that that Dali Mpofu will be added to the legal team. I wonder why EFF is so involved— Goolam (@goolammv) January 4, 2022