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Assault case opened against deputy Higher Education Minister Manana

A sound clip has gone viral purporting to be of the deputy minister admitting to slapping Mandisa Duma at a Johannesburg night club.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The police department has confirmed a case of assault has been opened against deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana.

A sound clip has gone viral purporting to be of the deputy minister admitting to slapping Mandisa Duma, a woman at a Johannesburg night club.

It is that understood Duma had been involved in a heated debate with Manana and a group of friends over who should replace President Jacob Zuma in December.

Photos of her injuries went viral on social media following the attack at Cedar Square in Fourways in the early hours of Sunday.

A man who claims he saw Manana attacking Duma says when he tried to intervene but the deputy minister ignored him and continued to assault the woman.

Lumko Jimlongo says he tried to stop Manana from assaulting Duma.

“I said to him: ‘Dude you can’t be doing this. I don’t care what the woman may or may not have done.’ His response was ‘who do you think you are and what do you think you can do to me?’ But it continued.”

Police say the audio recording, which is apparently a phone conversation between the alleged victim's brother and Manana, will also form part of the investigation.

The police ministry's Vuyo Mhaga says: “We will issue a formal statement later this morning. No one is above the law and women remain our number one priority in terms of protection.”

Furthermore, Jimlongo says he was in the night club at the time of the assault and claims that Duma was not only slapped.

“Then he proceeded to use his foot to trample on her head and body. She was on the floor and he had a chunk of her hair, he was pulling her by her hair.”

Police are now investigating an assault case but no arrests have yet been made.

A recorded telephone conversation purporting to be of the deputy minister admitting to slapping a woman has also emerged.

In the clip, Manana says the woman made a derogatory comment about his sexuality.

“They came without reason and he found them there, they started saying I’m gay and after that there was confrontation and we fought, but the people that assaulted them was the people I was with.”

But her brother Phesheya says even if she did insult him, it doesn’t justify Manana and his friends beating her up.

“There was a comment on it but I can’t say that was enough reason to assault someone all the way to the point of the parking lot. Three women against six men.”

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)

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