Former Ukhozi FM presenter Ngizwe Mlando Mchunu has been acquitted of all charges by the Randburg Magistrate’s Court. Mchunu was facing charges of inciting public unrest and contravening covid-19 regulations in 2021.
The self-proclaimed president of the Bhinca Nation’s issues with the law started in July 2021 following the arrest of former president of South Africa Jacob Zuma for contempt of court. Mchunu vehemently criticized the justice system over Zuma’s arrest, saying he was being treated unfairly. On the 11th of July 2021, he travelled to Johannesburg to host a press conference. At that press conference, he demanded that Zuma be released or hell would break loose. Thereafter, he was accused of inciting the public to commit acts of violence and breaking the laws that had been put in place to contain the spread of coronavirus.
Following his media address, the police attempted to arrest Mchunu. However, with the help of his then close friend, traditional healer Dr Khehlelezi, he managed to escape from Johannesburg to KZN in a private jet. Nonetheless, after realizing the seriousness of this matter, he handed himself over to the police in Durban. He was then transported back to Johannesburg and kept in custody until he was released on bail a few days later. Since then he has been in and out of court trying to clear his name.
More than two years later, Mchunu is a free man after Magistrate RG Sadiki cleared him of all charges. In handing down his judgment, Sadiki said, “It is my determination that the accused’s version is reasonably and possibly true, and the state did not discharge its onus of proving the case against the accused beyond reasonable doubt.
“The benefit of the doubt will also be awarded to the accused.”
The news of Mchunu’s acquittal has been welcomed by his supporters. Addressing the media outside the court, Mchunu said, “I’m feeling very honoured to the justice system of South Africa at large because they’ve proven the law is above everything. The law is for all of us. It’s not just for certain people. It’s not only for greedy politicians who are manipulating the system.”
Zuma was among those who showed up in court on Friday to support Mchunu.