Mandela grandson faces assault charges -South Africa prosecutors

December 1, 2013
Mandla, grandson of Nelson Mandela, talks to journalists during a news conference in Mvezo
Mandla Mandela (L), grandson of former South African president Nelson Mandela, talks to journalists during a news conference in Mvezo, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, July 4, 2013, a day after a court order to return the bodies of three of Mandela's children to Qunu was carried out. REUTERS/Siegfried Modola

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa will charge one of Nelson Mandela's grandsons with assault and brandishing a gun at another man, a prosecutor's official said on Sunday, in a further embarrassment for the anti-apartheid hero's large and fractious family.

Mandla Mandela is due to appear in court on Friday, Luxolo Tyali, a spokesman for the National Prosecuting Authority, told Reuters. "The NPA has decided to prosecute him and summons have been issued," Tyali said.

South Africa's Sunday Times newspaper said the younger Mandela was reported to have drawn a gun on a 44-year-old teacher whose vehicle had collided with one driven by a guest of Mandla Mandela's.

The teacher later had to undergo emergency surgery to remove a blood clot from his brain, the newspaper said. A spokesman for the younger Mandela has said the incident never happened and the accusation was "pure fabrication".

Tyali spelled out the charges facing Mandla Mandela but declined to give details of the incident.

Mandla Mandela made headlines earlier this year when a judge ordered him to return the remains of three of Nelson Mandela's children - including those of his father - from a memorial center dedicated to his grandfather where he had moved them two years ago.

Mandla had been sued by more than a dozen of Mandela's relatives who wanted the remains returned. Mandla said as the local head of the family, it was within his rights to bury the remains on his property.

Former president Nelson Mandela, 95, spent nearly three months in hospital this year for a lung infection that left him in critical condition. He has been receiving care at his Johannesburg home since early September.

In all, Nelson Mandela fathered six children from his three marriages.

(Reporting by David Dolan; Editing by Mark Heinrich)