Durban - A schools inspector with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education appeared in court on Thursday for allegedly assaulting a junior colleague over a state vehicle.
Sbusiso Mngadi is facing a charge of common assault.
The Daily News reported last month that Makhosi Hlatshwayo, a transport official at the uMlazi circuit office, claimed she was attacked for refusing to hand over the keys to the inspector’s “favourite” state vehicle - a 4x4 double cab.
At the time, witnesses said Mngadi had acted “like a raging bull” when he allegedly delivered a barrage of body blows to Hlatshwayo, who ended up in tears and her clothes in tatters.
Hlatshwayo is in charge of the vehicle pool. It is alleged that Mngadi favoured the double cab and would sometimes not return the key at the end of the day or when he returned from trips.
On the day of the alleged attack, Hlatshwayo was doing a pre-test on another vehicle, which was to be used by another official.
The double cab was behind the pre-tested vehicle at the time. It is alleged that Mngadi had arrived and brought the vehicle engine to life and left it idling.
When Hlatshwayo finished pre-testing the other vehicle, she switched the 4x4’s engine off and took the key.
Witnesses said Mngadi returned and demanded the keys, but Hlatshwayo refused. This then resulted in the alleged attack.
When contacted at the time, Mngadi said he was not in a position to comment, and that the matter had been dealt with internally.
However, he stressed that he did not attack Hlatshwayo, but had tried to grab the keys of the all-terrain vehicle.
Mngadi, who made his first court appearance in the uMlazi Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, again declined comment.
Prosecutor Yuthika Munsaur told the court it had been the State’s intention to try to resolve the matter through the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process.
“The ADR did not work as the complainant would like to see this matter resolved in court,” Munsaur said, asking for an adjournment because there were outstanding statements from four witnesses
Magistrate Suraj Harilal then adjourned the matter to October 2.
Outside court, Hlatshwayo would not say how the department had handled the matter.
“It’s an internal matter, but as for the humiliation and trauma I was subjected to, I am definitely suing the inspector,” she said.
By the time of publication, the department’s spokesman couldn’t be reached for comment.