Trial of man accused of torching PMB’s Brookside Mall set to begin

Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg on fire during the July 2021 unrest.

Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg on fire during the July 2021 unrest. Picture: Screen grab from video.

Published Jul 23, 2023


Durban - The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in KwaZulu-Natal said the trial of Ndumiseni Khetha Zuma, who stands accused of torching Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg during the July 2021 unrest, will begin on Monday.

NPA spokesperson Natasha Ramkisson-Kara said Zuma’s trial had been set down from July 24-28, in the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court 2.

“Zuma faces charges of incitement to commit public violence and incitement to commit arson, in relation to the burning of the Brookside Mall in July 2021 during the looting and civil unrest that took place in parts of KwaZulu-Natal,” she said.

Ramkisson-Kara said the 35-year-old remained in custody following an unsuccessful bail application on appeal. Last September IOL reported that Zuma’s legal representative withdrew his services, citing ethical reasons.

According to the NPA, the trial was initially set down for August 4, 2022, and then on September 1 the matter was postponed at the behest of the defence, stating that they required more time to consult with Zuma, according to the report.

At the time of the report Zuma was expected to apply for Legal Aid and had been behind bars for almost a year following his arrest in August 2021.

The report said the matter then returned to court on September 16, 2022.