On Tuesday morning, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen, addressed the media regarding the party’s plan of action to get to the real cause of the tragic Parliament fire.
An arrest has been made
Since the fire, a 49-year-old suspect, Zandile Mafe, has been arrested and charged for arson, being in possession of an explosive device, housebreaking, theft, and destruction of essential infrastructure.
And this morning, Mafe appeared in court and denied all charges against him. His case has been postponed until the 11th of January for now.
The DA’s Johan Steenhuisen warns against scapegoating
During the media briefing, Steenhuisen ensured that the DA welcomes the arrest of the Parliament fire suspect. However, scapegoating should not be allowed.
“We welcome that arrest, but we must also not allow scapegoating to take place. We need to get to the bottom of why these fire started, how it was allowed to spread and why it was able to do so in such a manner, what systems were working and which systems were not working?
“What we have seen over the last few days is a lot of blame-shifting between various role players and I think that every section of Parliament needs to step up and take responsibility,” said Steenhuisen.
DA to ensure that “democracy doesn’t stop doing its work”
Furthermore, Steenhuisen added that the DA will do everything in their power to ensure that the “legislature” is back up and running again.
“If this is as some are suggesting, an assault on our democracy then the best reaction will be to ensure that democracy doesn’t stop doing its work.
“And so the focus for us over the next few weeks and months will be on how we get Parliament business back up and running as seamlessly as possible.”