Former deputy minister of higher education Mduduzi Manana believes there is a campaign to tarnish his name.
Convicted woman beater and former deputy minister of higher education Mduduzi Manana believes there is a campaign to tarnish his image after allegations emerged that he abused his domestic worker.

Manana has denied shoving and pushing Christine Wiro, who is said to have started working for him two weeks ago.

However, he admitted that he was expecting a guest on Sunday when the alleged assault and verbal abuse happened.

“I have told her on two to three occasions that she must not open the gate or door to anyone without verifying with me first. I was expecting a guest (for breakfast on Sunday morning) and got upset when she opened the gate for someone I did not know.

“Like any other employer, I asserted authority to say that she cannot just open the door or gate for anyone,” Manana said.

Asked if he had assaulted or verbally abused Wiro like she claimed to Douglasdale police in a case she withdrew hours later, Manana said: “Not at all. I am not sure (why she would say that). (It did not happen), that is why I think she went to the police station and withdrew the charges. I think it is an effort to tarnish my name.”

Manana said he did not want his domestic worker to open the door or gate to strangers because it was a “security risk”.

Gauteng police spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters confirmed that Wiro had withdrawn the charges.

“She had opened a case of common assault and came back to the police station a few hours later to withdraw the case. No reasons were given. It is the prerogative of the victim to withdraw the case,” Peters said.

Wiro, 53, from Zimbabwe could not be reached for comment.

Manana, an ANC MP, last year pleaded guilty to assaulting three women at Cubana, a restaurant in Fourways, Joburg. In November, he was sentenced to either a year imprisonment or to pay a R100000 fine for beating the women after they allegedly called him “istabane (gay)”.

He was also ordered to pay each victim for damages.

Manana also had to complete 500 hours of community service and attend counselling.

The Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) and Cosatu have called on Manana to be removed from Parliament.

“The PAC emphasised the importance of the abuser to be thoroughly rehabilitated and be excused from holding any public office.

“It is not negotiable that parliamentarians should carry themselves in an esteemed conduct suitable for the position they hold in public. Manana’s conduct is anti-people and anti-Parliament,” the PAC’s spokesperson Kenneth Mokgatlhe said.

Cosatu’s spokesperson Sizwe Pamla said: “It is unacceptable that someone who represents the ANC in Parliament is accused of abusing a domestic worker.

“The federation is appalled by a spike in incidents of abuse of domestic workers in South Africa.

“We call on the Department of Labour to increase its monitoring and enforcement systems to help these workers against sexual and emotional abuse, including those subjected to human trafficking.”

The Mercury