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Principal ‘hit with glass jug’

Bloody brawl at school after teacher accused of arriving late

A Port Elizabeth principal, left bloody after he was allegedly smacked in the face with a glass jug by one of his teachers, will appear alongside her in court today after they laid assault complaints against each other.
The brawl unfolded in Nkuthalo Primary School principal Ray Dili’s office at about 8am on Thursday after he got into an argument with teacher Mandisa Tose about her alleged late arrival at the Zwide school.
Tose wrote her arrival time in the teachers’ attendance register but Dili crossed it out and marked a much later time.
School governing body chairwoman Neliswa Ruse said Dili rewrote the time with a red pen – which angered Tose.
Dili had then tried to remove Tose from his office and she allegedly grabbed a glass jug and hit him in the face with it.
The two will appear in the New Brighton Magistrate’s Court today after they laid complaints of assault against each other.
Education department spokesman Malibongwe Mtima said the incident had been reported.
He said an assault complaint had been laid by Dili, but that Tose claimed his injuries were self-inflicted.
“The department through its labour directorate will investigate the matter and get to the bottom of things,” Mtima said.
“We intend to take swift and harsh action where there is prima facie evidence for a case following due labour processes.”
Tose said yesterday: “Everyone has approached [Dili] and they are talking to him about the incident. No one has approached me about what happened.”
Asked if she would like to comment, she said: “Everything will come out in court.
“I will fight this thing until it is done.
“He [Dili] is going around blackening my name and it’s not right.”
Her lawyer, Dean Murray, said they would be better placed to speak about the incident after today’s court appearance.
“At this stage, I am not even sure what charges are being brought against my client,” he said.“I will only know for sure once I see the docket [today].
“My client is bringing similar charges of assault GBH [grievous bodily harm] against the principal.”
Contacted for comment, Dili requested more time but declined later to comment. Department of Education labour and legal services director Mphakamisi Hlekani said Dili and Tose had approached his office to register their grievances.
“We highly condemn this incident,” he said.
“If anyone felt aggrieved, they should have reported it to the department.
“There is no justification for this incident that played out. It is highly irresponsible, particularly if it involves the principal.
“It is not good behaviour that was displayed by our educators.
“What kind of message are we sending to learners?”
He said a team of inspectors was sent to the school to investigate and disciplinary action would be taken against anyone found guilty.
A teacher who witnessed the fight, but asked not to be named, said Tose’s reaction was uncalled for.
“This is a woman who [allegedly] hit the principal with the jug – we were all astonished,” he said.
“The argument was regarding the signing of the register.
“She was angry because the time was changed, but I mean, to hit someone with a jug?”
Police spokesman Captain Andre Beetge said Dili and Tose had opened assault cases against each other on the day of the incident.
He said Dili alleged that Tose had hit him with a glass jug while she alleged that she had been manhandled by him.
The incident is reminiscent of the Nelson Mandela Bay council brawl on October 2016, when ANC councillor Andile Lungisa smashed a glass jug over the head of then DA mayoral committee member Rano Kayser.
Lungisa is out on bail as he plans to appeal against his conviction and three-year prison sentence, of which one year was suspended.

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