- Former African National Congress staffer, Carl Niehaus, has been accused of being closely associated with Zandile Mafe
- Online accusers have stated that Niehaus marched with Mafe in 2017, but Niehaus says that these remarks are slanderous lies
- Mafe's attorney, Luvuyo Godla, does not believe that his client is guilty of the charges facing him
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CAPE TOWN - Carl Niehaus, a previous employee of the African National Congress, has been accused online of knowing Zandile Mafe, who is charged with starting the Parliament fire.
The exact claim was that Niehaus and Mafe protested together in solidarity with former president Jacob Zuma by marching to Luthuli House in 2017.
Niehaus replied to the claims by announcing that he, together with his lawyers, will pursue a defamation lawsuit against parties who accused him of any association with Mafe.
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Niehaus' defence and details about Mafe
Niehaus further defended himself by saying that in 2017 he lived in KwaZulu-Natal and therefore did not attend the march. He referred to the claims as "lies, fake news, and cheap propaganda."
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Mafe will appear in the Cape Town Magistrate's Court on 11 January, where he will present his bail application, TimesLIVE reports. Mafe's attorney, Luvuyo Godla, does not believe that his client is guilty of the charges facing him.
South Africa reacts to Niehaus' response
"Go for them uncle Carl."
"Please go after Fikile Mbalula as well."
"You'd have to prove the guy didn't march with you. We'll await such evidence."
"Carl, you are incapable of being defamed."
"Hey Mr Niehaus, do you know the suspect or not? Have you ever marched with him?"
Mafe's family and neighbours say he was a shy and quiet person
Speaking of the Parliament fire, earlier Briefly News reported that the family of Zandile Christmas Mafe say their family member innocent of the crimes he is being accused of. The family is committed to proving that he did not start the fire.
Mafe was arrested shortly after the blaze at Parliament broke out, and authorities say he was found in the precinct. He is now facing charges related to housebreaking, arson and theft, amongst others.
Mafe's brother, Alfred Matiwane, says they were shocked and saddened when they saw his face all over the news and his name plastered in headlines. According to Matiwane, Mafe was a loner when growing up and had no violent tendencies.
Source: Briefly News