Barely nine days after one of Nelson Mandela’s grandsons, Mbuso Mandela, aged 24, was charged with raping a 15-year-old girl earlier this month, a South African court on Tuesday, granted him bail, reports AFP.
The 24-year old is accused of raping the teenager in the toilets of a bar in Johannesburg. His bail was set at $535 (£340) (7,000 rand) and he was ordered to surrender his passport. He will return to the court on September 16.
Meanwhile, during the hearing, his lawyers disputed the age of his accuser, arguing that she was 16 and that sex was consensual, .
Under South African law, sex with someone under 16 is classed as rape whether consensual or not.
Marinda Veldsman, Mbuso’s lawyer said: “Mbuso would adhere to his bail conditions because he is a father of two, with a third child on the way. He does not have a job.”
Assuring the court that her client enjoyed no special privilege, Veldsman said: “He does not want to be tried as a Mandela, he wants to be tried as a normal person.”
However, the father of the girl claims that his daughter is actually 15, saying “My daughter doesn’t even have an ID. She only has a birth certificate. She was born in 2000, and she definitely is 15 years old. I have always heard about rape, but once it hits a person close to you, you realise it’s a painful thing that you don’t wish on anyone. I’m just praying that this case will be treated like any other rape case.”