Just over two weeks after he flanked Jacob Zuma in front of Zuma’s Nkandla home where the former President addressed a gathering of supporters before his imprisonment a few days later, media practitioner and former DJ Ngizwe Mchunu has turned himself in to the police.

A Daily Maverick report says he is among six ‘key arrests’ made so far, according to a government statement, with three suspects remanded in custody ‘for bail hearings later’.

The charges against them include incitement to commit public violence.

More arrests are expected soon, the statement said. 

Mchunu travelled to Johannesburg a week after his Nkandla appearance to ‘address the nation’ at Kwa Mai Mai, a traditional medicine market and hostel inhabited by people with roots in KZN. There he gave President Cyril Ramaphosa and acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo three days to release Zuma, who was jailed for 15 months after defying a court order to testify before the State Capture Inquiry.

A couple of days after Zuma was incarcerated in the Estcourt Correctional Centre, violence began in KZN and spread to Gauteng.

Acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni did not mention any names, but Mchunu’s arrest was confirmed on Ngizwe Online’s Facebook page. TimesLIVE reported that Mchunu was en route to Gauteng to appear before the Randburg Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. 

Patriotic Alliance mayoral candidate in the West Rand Municipality, Bruce Aldrin Nimmerhoudt, appeared in court yesterday charged with incitement to commit public violence by sending out a WhatsApp voice note.

Nimmerhoudt does not seem to be part of the original dozen or so suspects sought by law enforcement authorities in connection with last week’s violence, as his voice note did the rounds towards the end of the week and didn’t actually result in anything. The case was postponed to 26 July, notes the DM report. 

One of the alleged instigators in Gauteng, Sibusiso Mavuso, appeared in the Westonaria Magistrate’s Court following his arrest on Friday, Beeld reports.

According to the charge sheet, Mavuso led a group of people to a Pick n Pay store in Westonaria where they sang songs, danced, and demanded that the store should close. Mavusa allegedly used social media to drum up support by publishing the following message: ‘Bekkersdal and th (sic) West Rand are waiting for the Constitutional Court to abide the law…or all hell will break loose. Who wants a civil war, because tonight will be worse.’

Mavusa told the court he has only one previous conviction, being possession of stolen goods. The case was postponed to 23 July for a bail application and Mavusa remains in custody.

Another 587 people appeared in courts in the West Rand district, the NPA said in a statement, bringing the total number facing prosecution to 682, according to the DM

They are aged from 18 to 72 and their charges include public violence, theft, malicious injury to property, the contravention of Covid-19 lockdown regulations, housebreaking with intent to commit an offence, and robbery. 

Full Daily Maverick report

Full Beeld report (subscription needed)