The case of Deputy Minister of Higher Education Mduduzi Manana has sparked conversation about the justice system in South Africa. In particular, people have slammed the police for giving Manana what they see as special treatment.
This follows the release of footage where he is seen slapping a women outside a bar and restaurant on Sunday. This, however, did not lead to his immediate arrest. This was despite Police Minister Fikile Mbalula saying that police would be arresting him.
Mbalula told Eye Witness News that "He's [Manana is] not above the law. He'll be arrested." He also expressed his concern about the matter and said he could not understand why Manana had not been arrested even after charges of assault were laid against him.
For his court appearance on Thursday, a video posted on Twitter shows Manana entering court through the senior prosecutor's office, which is a clear indication that he was not waiting for proceedings in a holding cell.
But Manana is not the only one who has been accused of being given special treatment. The public has criticised heavily the cases of Oscar Pistorius, Molemo "Jub Jub" Maarohanye and Shabir Shaik.
Pistorius was released under correctional supervision preparing to face four years of house arrest with his family in 2015.
The Paralympian was arrested in 2013 for shooting and killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. Judge Thokozile Masipa sentenced Pistorius to six years in prison, but he only spent 10 months behind bars.
During his imprisonment, rumours of how he was getting preferential treatment made the rounds. NBC news spoke to inmate Boswell Mhlongo, who said Pistorius was a VIP prisoner.
He said: "I mean, everything was free for him. He can do whatever he wants."
Mhlongo added: "How can you get your own gym, your own gym alone? Why the cell that we're in — we were never given curtains — but his cell was prepared special? Because he's got money. I mean it's Oscar Pistorius."
Molemo "Jub Jub" Maarohanye
The rapper was released on parole in January after serving only four years of his sentence. Maarohanye and co-convicted Themba Tshabalala were found guilty of culpable homicide for killing four schoolchildren in a drag racing accident.The pair was initially handed 20 years for murder but their sentences were reduced to 10 years, two of which were suspended.
At the time, Jub Jub's lawyer made it very clear that his client did not receive preferential treatment in the parole process.
But South Africans took to social media to express their disapproval.
Some families of the killed victims are not happy with the released of both Jub Jub and Themba Tshabalala from jail. pic.twitter.com/vvMGnH2kPF— The Informa News (@TheInformaNews1) January 7, 2017
Justice system in South Africa is trash. Why was Jub Jub released from jail? I guess it's okay to drink and drive.— Malusi (@Malusiiiiiii) January 5, 2017
Jub Jub was released from Jail today after just serving 4 yrs' But there are still people in jail serving life sentence for stealing candy— Madcray ♠ (@Sekati_Junior) January 5, 2017
Shaik has been on medical parole for the past eight years, after it was said he was terminally ill. His house arrest conditions have been regarded as lax, with the former government official still attending school functions for his son and travelling outside the province.
He only served two years and four months of a 15-year sentence after being convicted on two counts of corruption and one count of fraud.
The judge residing over his case found "overwhelming" evidence of a corrupt relationship between Shaik and President Jacob Zuma.
The Democratic Alliance has continued to criticise Shaik's release, calling it a farce.