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By Citizen Reporter


UPDATE: Case against alleged riots instigator, FMF activist Khanyile, postponed

The 31 year old was arrested last week at his student residence at Wits University by the Hawks.

Fees Must Fall (FMF) activist Bonginkosi Khanyile appeared in the Durban Magistrate’s Court on Monday for allegedly instigating last month’s unrest and looting in KwaZulu-Natal.

The National Prosecuting Authority said the matter was postponed to Thursday, 26 August for a formal bail application.

Khanyile is accused of convening a gathering, contravening a prohibition by holding a rally and/or address under Disaster Management Regulations, contravening regulation 31(2) regarding regulations 1, 3, 4 and 5 of Disaster Management Regulations, and incitement to commit public violence. 

The first, second and third charges go against adjusted level 4 lockdown, which was in place when the unrest was taking place.

ALSO READ: Bonginkosi Khanyile arrested like ‘hardened criminal’ for Zuma riots – mother

The 31 year old was arrested last week at his student residence at Wits University by the Hawks. He was escorted to Durban where he was detained, according to Hawks spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale.

Khanyile is alleged to have been involved in the incitement of public violence through social media and other platforms during the period of unrest in KZN and Gauteng, which claimed more than 300 lives and caused economic damage running into billions of rands.

Khanyile, a staunch supporter of former president Jacob Zuma, had called for Zuma’s release after his imprisonment last month for contempt of court.

He also spoke on behalf of former Ukhozi FM radio DJ, Ngizwe Mchunu, who was charged with incitement to commit public violence linked to the riots.

Mchunu was released on R2,000 bail by the Randburg Magistrates Court in late July.

ALSO READ: Alleged SA riots instigator, Ngizwe Mchunu, granted R2,000 bail

Khanyile’s troubles with the law

In 2019, Khanyile received a three-year prison sentence, suspended for five years, and a fine of R5,000, also suspended. He was ordered, however, to serve three years under house arrest by the Durban Regional Court.

He was arrested in September 2016 during running battles between police and Durban University of Technology students, which took place during the height of the FMF protests.

Khanyile was charged with incitement to commit public violence, illegal gathering, possession of dangerous weapons (a slingshot), obstructing traffic, causing a nuisance on public roads and possession of explosives.

Khanyile had earlier made headlines when his bail application made it all the way to the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) after being denied at the lower courts. After close to six months in prison, the ConCourt granted him bail of only R250.

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