CAPE TOWN - Alleged Parliament arsonist Zandile Mafe will have to wait until later this week to hear if his bail application, which went ahead at the weekend, will be granted.
Judgment in the matter was reserved until Friday.
The State alleges that Mafe, who took the stand on Saturday during bail application proceedings in the Cape Town Regional Court, confessed to setting Parliament alight and gave reasons why he had done this.
According to the reasons offered by Mafe in the alleged confession: “It was the right thing to put the Parliament on fire, as it does not work for people like him who are suffering”.
Mafe allegedly further demanded in his alleged confession the immediate resignation of President Cyril Ramaphosa, the release of convicted murderer Janusz Waluś, and a monthly grant of R1 500 for the unemployed.
Dali Mpofu SC, Mafe’s advocate, submitted: “It was common cause that this accused, Mafe, was arrested on January 2. On January 4, the matter was postponed for a bail application, and it was these issues that has snowballed to where we are now.
“The most serious thing is that the legislature of this country decrees you can only postpone (a bail application) for seven days at a time, but because of the behaviour and the conduct of the State, Mafe’s case was postponed due to him going to Valkenberg.
“The postulations by the State about this, that and the other (have been made) without any evidence,” said Mpofu.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Spokesperson, Eric Ntabazalila said the NPA opposed the bail application as Mafe was facing a Schedule 6 offence.
Mafe has been charged with housebreaking with intent to commit terrorism and arson, as well as arson, terrorism and theft.
Charges against Mafe were reformulated after he was released from Valkenberg Psychiatric Hospital and Senior State Prosecutor, Advocate Mervyn Menigo, the leading prosecutor in the matter, had studied the docket afresh and further consulted with the investigating officer.
Ntabazalila said: “A couple of points were put forward regarding the opposition (to bail), including that it is not in the interests of justice, (Mafe) is a danger to society and himself, and if he is released on bail it will cause an uproar because there was shock when Parliament was burnt down. We also introduced as part of our arguments the affidavit of the investigating officer (relating to) the confession of Mafe.
“The defence has failed dismally to show why Mafe should be released on bail. They failed to do that. We hope he is denied bail,” said Ntabazalila.