Parliament Arsonist suspect was in possession of items from explosives to documents

Parliament Arsonist suspect was in possession of items from explosives to documents..  The man who is allegedly responsible for the fire at Parliament made his first appearance in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, January 4.

The 49-year-old suspect identified as Zandile Christmas Mafe from site B in Khayelitsha was arrested after he was caught with the stolen property after he gained entry to the parliamentary precinct. Mafe faces charges relating to the National Key Point Act.

According to News24, the State told the court that the 49-year-old suspect had been in the possession of explosives and laptops, crockery and documents had been stolen during the time that the blaze took place.

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Originally from Mafikeng in North West, Mafe is a resident of Khayelitsha and the State has been postponed for seven days to verify his personal details for his bail application. The case has also been postponed as a result of waiting for the damages of the Parliament building to be assessed.

The seven-day postponement to conclude all investigations was granted by the court and the case will continue on Tuesday, 11 January.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for an independent forensic investigation into the fire. Chief Whip Natasha Mazzone says the police cannot investigate the incident, reports, SABC.

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Mazzone says they will insist at the meeting of the Chief Whips Forum that independent investigators work alongside police forensic investigators.

“We have seen forensic investigators on the precinct this (Tuesday) morning. But we do believe that an independent forensic investigation is needed. From the damage and the devastation that we can see and the damage and devastation that we cannot see and the last statement by the Speaker, it looks like something more sinister than simply a homeless man jumping the fence and starting a fire on the third floor. It is looking like something more sinister going on and we will get to the bottom of it believe you me.”

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