Johannesburg – Deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana will face an ANC disciplinary inquiry following his assault of two women at a Johannesburg nightclub.
The ANC’s national working committee took the decision to discipline him, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said on Tuesday.
“He is not serving as a leader in any structure, so the only line of action will be subjecting him to a disciplinary hearing.”
He could face suspension or expulsion from the party if found guilty.
He remains in his job, despite admitting to the assault of two women at the Cubana nightclub in Fourways, Johannesburg, last weekend.
President Jacob Zuma has been criticised for not firing Manana. He appeared in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court on Thursday and was released on R5 000 bail. He faces two charges of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
Mantashe would not comment on whether Zuma should recall him.
“I can’t speak for Cabinet. I don’t know the rules there.”
Mantashe said Manana’s case reflected an intolerance towards people with different sexual preferences.
In a cellphone recording of Manana talking to one of the victims’ brothers shortly after the assault, Manana says he slapped the woman because she called him gay.
“There are a lot of people who get assaulted and killed because they have a different sexual orientation. That aspect must not be underplayed because it is a reality in this case,” Mantashe said.
Manana claimed he had been “extremely provoked”.
Mantashe said that some in the ANC felt Manana was “too young” to be disciplined.
“People argued that he was young and I said 32 is not young. Let’s take the youth out of it and condemn the abuse of women outright.”
A source who attended the NWC meeting said one member argued that the ANC was not consistent in disciplining its members. This followed Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe’s sexual advances to a junior employee.
In May, the Sunday Times reported that Radebe, in a cellphone message exchange, asked a presidential photographer for a picture of her genitals. Radebe apologised and faced no further consequences. DM