Alleged Parliament arsonist Zandile Mafe’s trial postponed to 9th June

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The defence team of alleged Parliament arsonist, Zandile Mafe, has called on the court to expedite the matter so that his trial can start.

Mafe briefly appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.

The case has been postponed to the 9th of June. A crime scene and arson report are still outstanding as well as the Parliament damage report.

Mafe’s defence lawyer, Luvuyo Godla, says the state has already had ample time to complete its investigations.

“The investigation must have been completed by now. If we talk about a case incident of the 2nd of January, now it’s almost mid 2022 so we can’t be talking about an investigation forever. And another thing they are saying, transferring the matter to the High Court does not depend on whether they have finalised their investigation or not; this is why I vehemently opposed. They needed only two weeks, not until the 9th of June.”

Family shocked by allegations

Mafe, who is originally from Mahikeng in the North West, was arrested shortly after the fire broke out at Parliament on the 2nd of January.

The family, shocked by the allegations that he burnt Parliament down, says Mafe left home in 2004 and moved to Cape Town. He had been doing odd jobs there since then.

His brother, Alfred Matiwane, describes him as a loner, reserved and polite, saying he would not hurt anyone.

Mafe’s other brother, Zamile Matiwane, is equally upset and says they deserve to be told what led to his arrest.

Mafe’s family speaks out in the report below:

-Additional reporting by Sylvester Serame