July unrest: Trial of alleged instigator charged over mall fire delayed | News24


  • The trial of an alleged July unrest instigator was delayed on Thursday.
  • Ndumiseni Zuma’s trial was set to begin, but the defence asked for more time to consult with their client.
  • Zuma faces charges of incitement to commit public violence and incitement to commit arson.

The trial of an alleged July unrest instigator who was charged with inciting violence that led to the setting alight of Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg during the carnage, was delayed on Thursday.

The trial of Ndumiseni Zuma, 35, was set to kick off in the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court on Thursday, but the matter was moved to 1 September due to delays concerning his defence.

“While the State was ready to proceed, to the effect that witnesses were warned to be in court, the matter was postponed at the behest of the defence,” National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Natasha Kara said.

Special project | July unrest: One year later

She said the defence brought an application for an adjournment, stating that they required more time to consult Zuma and finalise their instructions.

Zuma was arrested in August 2021, allegedly for inciting violence during the July unrest.

Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg was set on fire and looted during the unrest.

KwaZulu-Natal Hawks spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale said Zuma was accused of using social media and other platforms to incite violence in the province, News24 reported.

It allegedly resulted in the looting and torching of the Pietermaritzburg mall.

Zuma faces charges of incitement to commit public violence and incitement to commit arson.

During the July unrest, Brookside Mall was set alight, with heavy smoke bellowing from the normally busy mall.

More than 300 people died and economic damage of more than R50 billion was caused during the chaotic week in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

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