From the BBC article.

“It is quite clear that all these incidents of unrest and looting were instigated – there were people who planned it and co-ordinated it,” Mr Ramaphosa said in a visit to KwaZulu-Natal, Mr Zuma’s home province and the epicentre of the violence.

Obviously the correct answer is “yes”.

But why? Why destroy such critical systems, infrastructure, and job creating zones like malls?
Think of how much gasoline you need to burn down a mall?
That’s not an easy “Grab your Bic Lighter” task.
Well, the answer is that this was a giant ground breaking ceremony.
Sans the golden shovel, ribbon cutting, and the applause.
A lot of interesting buildings were also destroyed; Including, but not limited to over 100 cell towers, chemical plants, warehouses, malls, damaged ports, grocers, and various other wealth generating critical economic pieces. Reportedly even the airport and some hospitals were attacked.
But guess what?
The current leaders of South Africa have plans for these areas.
So out with the old, and in with the new.
Gauteng was one of the epicenters for violence, and, conveniently, construction for the new 5G smart city is going to begin any day now. Presumably, right after they get done bulldozing all the old stuff out of the way, tossed in the garbage, and polished up for some surveyors to begin phase one of the smart city projects.

The other area, KZN (KwaZulu Natal) is also host to a future smart city and was a center for violence during this uprising.

Problem: Some Africans won’t sell and don’t want the Chinese smart city.
Reaction: Blame the arson and destruction of old systems (like cell phones, warehouses, and radio towers) on the guy who got arrested, Zuma.
Solution: Have you operatives magically attack everything that needs to be removed anyway.
Free demolition crew without those pesky union dues and labor rates… plus a fat insurance payout.
Pretty easy huh?
And they just saved millions on demolition by having the locals trash it, and clean it up for free.
I am sure our betters, who are in fact TOP men, are having a laugh about that.
This article below is from 2020. Gauteng is getting a serious makeover.
So is KZN.

Coming soon to an economic zone near you.