Johannesburg – Bruce Aldrin Nimmerhoudt – a senior member of the Patriotic Alliance (PA) in Joburg – who allegedly incited mobs to attack malls on Gauteng’s West Rand, was ordered on Monday to seek bail after seven days by the Roodepoort Court of First Instance.
Niemmerhoudt, 45, from Toekomsrus in Randfontein, was not invited to plead for incitement to violence following his arrest at his other home in Witpoortjie, west of Joburg, on July 16.
He was remanded in custody until July 26 to allow him to formally request bail.
His arrest came after he allegedly made an appeal via an audio clip to supporters and members of the ANC Youth League and the Women’s League last Thursday.
He reportedly urged the two ANC-affiliated component structures to join him and his supporters in attacking shopping malls in Roodepoort, Krugersdorp, Randfontein and businesses in neighboring suburbs.
Nimmerhoudt also reportedly urged his supporters to block all main roads in Main Reef and attack trucks delivering goods to towns in West Rand.
The audio video led some residents of the western suburbs of Johannesburg and the West Rand area to frantically call their home security companies and neighborhood watches to join in the search for the suspect.
Urging his supporters to be vigilant, the alleged instigator said: “The communities of the West Rand are much stronger but we are much stronger. Do not attack schools, do not attack health facilities, but shopping malls. You can do what you want. Do not attack anyone except those who stand in your way.
In an effort to protect its residents, Farhaad Sardiwala, vice president of the Florida Community Policing Forum (CPF), sent the audio video to the police and their criminal intelligence services.
By the time the video was released, things had returned to normal in Roodepoort following ongoing battles between police, security guards and looters on Tuesday. The thieves had attempted to loot one of the bottle shops in a warehouse and retail store in the Roodepoort central business district.
On Friday, however, residents of West Rand were relieved after his arrest in the early hours of the morning at one of his identified residential addresses in the suburb of Witpoortjie, west of Joburg.
His arrest came after police got their hands on the voice clip and instructed all sources and contacts to establish its origin.
During his arrest, the police recovered three cell phones in his possession which are part of their investigation. Police say he confessed to his involvement in the production of the video.
He had been held in holding cells at Randfontein Police Station before his court appearance on Monday.