Former deputy higher education minister, Mduduzi Manana (seated) in the Randburg Magistrate's Court. Picture: Lindi Masinga/ANA

Johannesburg - The State has revealed that former deputy minister of higher education, Mduduzi Manana, has two previous convictions of theft dating back to 2004 and 2005.

The revelations were made in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday, the second day of sentencing of the former deputy minister who has pleaded guilty to two counts of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm for hitting two women at a Cubana nightclub earlier this year. 

Manana resigned from his deputy minister job as a result of the scandal.

Read: Mduduzi Manana was twice convicted of theft

On Wednesday State prosecutor, Anne-Marie Smith, gave the court documentary evidence of Manana's previous convictions. The accused paid a R500 admission of guilt fine for stealing a can of coke. In his defence the former deputy minister said he simply "forgot" to pay for the coke.

In mitigation of sentence, Manana's attorney, Michael Motswaneng Bill, told the court that his client was working on his "anger management" and had started an organisation for men who want to stop gender violence.

Manana was convicted of three counts of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm after pleading guilty to the charges. The charges relate to the assault of three women at Cubana in Fourways on August 6.

He requested that the court consider that he was no longer deputy minister and that his earnings had decreased. The accused also said he had to pay legal fees and the medical bills of his victims of around R37 000.

The former deputy minister asked the court for a suitable sentence, preferably a fine, and added that despite being found guilty he believed he still deserved to be allowed to handle a fire arm as he was never find guilty of a violent offence.

Sentencing continues.