Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training Mduduzi Manana. Picture: SOLLY MOKOENA
Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training Mduduzi Manana. Picture: SOLLY MOKOENA

Not too long ago‚ Higher Education and Training Minister Mduduzi Manana was described as a mild-mannered man who was slow to lose his temper.

That persona stands in sharp contrast to the man who admitted to assaulting a woman at a restaurant/club in Fourways, at the weekend.

In a 2015 profile‚ Manana was lauded for being one of the youngest MPs.

"Mduduzi Manana is passionate about changing the lives of young people‚" reads an article on the government website SA News.

"He always gets a buzz out of question time in Parliament without the slightest ruffle of temper. Even when he addresses his opponents‚ he is always very calm‚ something one finds quite fascinating‚ given his youthful age."

The author cites Manana’s love for American singer Beyonce‚ the Skin Renewal medical aesthetic skin-care centre and his admiration of former ANC president Oliver Tambo.

Manana‚ whose mother is also an MP‚ appeared in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court on Thursday on charges of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm. The 33-year-old politician was granted R5,000 bail.

Mandisa Duma said she was attacked by Manana in the early hours of Sunday morning after they got into an argument at the Cubana restaurant in Fourways.

Duma said Manana and his friends hit her and two other women after a debate about President Jacob Zuma’s potential successor.

A video of the incident suggested that the assault was more vicious than Manana had said.

But Manana presented a much gentler image of himself two years ago‚ coming across as a dedicated public servant.

"When I help a young South African — be it to access job opportunities or higher education opportunities — I sleep better at night‚" Manana said at the time.

In another write-up from the same year‚ Manana urged young people to get tested for HIV.

"Don’t be an additional burden to your family because your family is looking at you to take them out of poverty since you are at college … don’t disappoint them. Being a young adult comes with responsibilities‚ so you need to protect yourselves‚" he told students at a training college in Alexandra.

This week, that same man was urged to step down from his job.

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