Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
Joe Mafereka, Free State MEC for local government and housing, is embroiled in a bitter child-custody and maintenance dispute with his ex-lover.
The married Mafereka is said to have three children with former teacher, Madisebo Mokharumetso. The kids are a result of their seven-year love affair which ended in 2003.
Mafereka is disputing that he is the eldest child's father. The 15-year-old boy lives with Mokharumetso in Welkom, while the other children live with Mafereka in Bloemfontein.
Mokharumetso has challenged the MEC to go for a paternity test.
Things between the former lovers came to a head when Mokharumetso took the two children away from Mafereka at the beginning of May this year.
Mokharumetso allegedly went to their school in Welkom and took them home without informing him. Mafereka then opened a case of abduction against her.
The matter was heard in the Welkom magistrates' court on July 19 and 20. The court ruled that the children should remain in the Mafereka's custody.
Mafereka's argument in court was that Mokharumetso was too poor to take care of the children and that she was pregnant with another man's child. He also accused her of being a gold-digger.
Mokharumetso is challenging the court's decision. She wants all the children to live with her and Mafereka to pay maintenance.
"How can he say that I am poor, even though I took a severance package as a teacher in 2002, and I am self-employed.
"I have been taking care of the children. I am their mother and I have been buying them school uniforms and books.
"If he says the first child is not his, then he must take a paternity test to prove that. I am not pregnant as he claims."
Mokharumetso said she was disappointed by the court ruling that gave her children to Mafereka.
"I did not agree, I was just told to hand over the children to the MEC, this is unfair. My children cannot stay with another woman," she said, referring to Mafereka's wife.
However, she said she would comply with the court's decision because she had no choice but to allow the children to go to their father.