Nelson Mandela’s 24-year-old grandson, Mbuso Mandela, has been charged with raping a 15-year-old girl at a restaurant in Johannesburg.
Media reports say the victim was dining with friends when she was followed into a restroom and raped inside a stall on the night of August 7. Mbuso was arrested last weekend after the victim filed a complaint against him.
“According to the complainant, it happened on 7 August 2015,” police spokeswoman Brigadier Mashadi Selepe said. “It was reported to the police on the 14 August 2015.” She also asserted that Mbuso would be treated like any other citizen despite his family name.
Mbuso was “calm and composed” during a brief court appearance on Monday when he was charged with rape, South Africa’s Star reported. He remains in police custody and will return to the Johannesburg magistrates court on Friday for a bail hearing.
South Africa’s Times newspaper reported that staff at Mama’s Shebeen were unaware of the incident, and the owner of the restaurant, Yaw Dwomoh, told the paper that police had not yet approached him.. “We would cooperate, we have eight cameras in the restaurant, but the problem is that they only hold 120 hours, so by now they have been erased,” he was quoted as saying.
Family of the allege victim, who is reportedly receiving counseling, is accusing Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, ex-wife of the late president, of witness intimidation. They claim she sent a bodyguard to interfere in the case.
The bodyguard claimed to be a cop, according to reports, and told the accuser’s father that there was no need to have the suspect arrested, “but when the father asked to see his badge, he didn’t have one”.
Selepe said media reports about the bodyguard incident “was never brought to our attention nor reported.”
Mbuso is one of Mandela’s 17 grandchildren. Mandela died in 2013 at the age of 95.