DA calls for urgent State Security investigation amid concerns of orchestrated attack on Parliament

Issued by Dianne Kohler Barnard MP – DA member of the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence
13 Dec 2023 in News

Please find attached a soundbite by Dianne Kohler Barnard MP.

The events surrounding the fire at Parliament on January 2, 2022, have raised serious concerns about the security and integrity of our national heritage building. The DA acknowledges the arrest and subsequent declaration of Zandile Mafe as unfit to stand trial in connection with the incident. However, we firmly believe that the focus on Mafe should not divert our attention from the possibility of a larger, orchestrated effort to undermine our democracy.

The recently revealed screenshots from CCTV footage present a shocking timeline of events leading up to the fire. It is evident that the individual in question roamed freely within the precinct without detection for more than 24 hours. This raises serious questions about the security measures in place and the potential involvement of others in this deliberate act.

Of particular concern are the picture stills that seem to depict Mafe talking on the phone, suggesting possible communication with an external party. This alone constitutes enough evidence to warrant a thorough investigation into who else may have been involved in this attack on our democratic institution. We are calling for an urgent intervention by the State Security Agency (SSA) to conduct a comprehensive inquiry.

It is imperative to ascertain whether Mafe’s phone was analysed by the prosecution and, if not, why not. Confirming or denying the analysis of his phone is crucial to understanding the full scope of this incident. The possibility of a cover-up must be addressed transparently.

While Mafe’s mental health condition has been cited as a factor, we emphasise that even individuals with mental health challenges can be influenced and taken advantage of by others. The assertion that this act was orchestrated does not negate the importance of holding those with direct involvement accountable.

The DA demands a thorough investigation by the SSA. It is essential to shift our focus from the individual to the broader context of what appears to be a deliberate and coordinated act resembling terrorism on the Parliament building. The real culprits may be exploiting the attention on Mafe to escape scrutiny.

Our democracy is at stake, and we cannot allow such attacks to go unanswered.

We will closely monitor developments in this investigation and continue to advocate for a thorough and transparent process to ensure the safety and security of our democratic institutions.

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