A 49-year-old South African man arrested in connection with a fire at the country’s Parliament appeared in court this Tuesday accused of housebreaking, theft and arson.
Zandile Mafe appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court before Magistrate Zamekile Mbalo who postponed the case to 11 January.
Mafe, who is being represented by Luvuyo Godla, denied and rejected the charges.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson in the Western Cape, Eric Ntabazalila, said State investigators needed to confirm certain information about the suspect, such as his residential address and whether he has assets. Said Ntabazalila:
Investigators have not been able to go to Parliament to assess the damages. By next Tuesday we will have that information.
Mafe was arrested by officers from the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks).
The fire broke out on Sunday morning and destroyed the National Assembly and parts of the Old Assembly building.
On Monday afternoon strong south-easterly winds in the city resulted in a flare-up of the fire again. It was finally brought under control around midnight.