Harriet Manamela (born October 13, 1971; Age: 51 years old) is a South African actress, drama workshop facilitator, charity volunteer, and motivational speaker best known for her role as Meikie Seputla in the popular TV series, Skeem Saam.
It is difficult to tell if the actress is currently in a marital relationship as she has concealed information about her family and personal life for years. However, she is a mother. She notably celebrated her son’s birthday on March 1, 2022.
What is Harriet Manamela’s Age Now?
South African veteran actress Harriet Manamela is currently 51 years old. Her parents welcomed her into the world on the 13th of October 1971 in Diepkloof, a large zone of Soweto township, Gauteng province.
There is no available information about the actress’s background, parents, and early life. It’s not known if she is an only child and where she spent her life before stardom.
The Skeem Saam screen star matriculated from an academic institution in Boksburg called St Anthony’s Centre. She later joined the renowned Squints Artists Community Theatre Group in Alexandra, where she honed her acting skills.
Her Acting Career Began in the Year 1998
Harriet developed a keen interest in acting in her childhood. She eventually made her first stage appearance in a play titled The Virus and Let’s Talk About Aids, which was performed at The Market Theatre Laboratory Annual Festival. Since then, she has never looked back or given up on her childhood dream.
She spent two years at The Market Theatre performing several plays, including for the Young Writers Festival. Manamela also played a role in the theatrical production of the play Broken Dreams with The Market Theatre Laboratory drama school.
She featured in Theatre Sports for SABC3 and also sold her craft at The Grahamstown Arts Festival and The Market Theatre in the production of the play, Bozoli. She took a leap to the screen in 1998 when she joined other cast members in the TV series Soul City after several auditions.
She subsequently went on to bag other roles in the industry in popular local soap operas such as Justice For All II & III, Rhythm City, Yizo Yizo II, Isidingo, Zero Tolerance, Behind The Badge, and Soul Buddyz.
Harriet’s career got the needed boost in the year 2013 when she joined the e.tv soapie Rhythm City as the character Nomzamo, Suffocate’s alcoholic mother who had been drinking heavily for decades and uses alcohol as a coping mechanism.
Also in 2014, she starred in the SABC2 thriller series Thola as the sister of Dibuseng Makwarela (Nthati Moshesh) Dieketseng Mofokeng, who is forced to help her sibling fight for her forgotten values. In the same year, she had a guest-starring role in Episode 9 of the SABC1 docu-drama series Ngempela and her performance was nothing short of spectacular.
Her acting skills also earned her acting roles in a couple of short and full-length films. Manamela is an award-winning actress with the enviable SAFTA award to show for her acting talent. She bagged the SAFTA award for Best Supporting Actress in the year 2012 for her role in the film Life Above All.
The veteran actress was once nominated for the Vita award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the popular soap opera, Isidingo.
The Diepkloof-born Actress Rose to Stardom on the TV series Skeem Saam
Of all her films and TV projects in the industry, she is best known for her Skeem Saam no-nonsense character Meikie Maputla – John Maputla’s wife and Thabo and Leeto Maputla’s mother.
Harriet’s character Meikie was arrested multiple times in the show and once sentenced to Polokwane prison for her crimes. She shot and killed Tumishang (played by Mothusi Magano), who kept the Maputlas hostage.
Skeem Saam is a local telenovela that follows the plight of today’s children and the tough challenges they face transitioning into manhood.
Who is Harriet Manamela’s Real Husband?
Actress Harriet hasn’t mentioned the name of her husband publicly. In fact, she hasn’t mentioned anything about her marital life or even shared pictures that suggest she is in a marital relationship. She keeps a low profile on her family life, which makes many assume she is a divorcee.
However, the Yizo Yizo actress is a mother. The number of kids she has and their names are not public knowledge. On March 1, she shared a picture of her son, who clocked 21 years old.
For clarity purposes, Harriet Manamela is not the wife of the renowned South African politician Buti Manamela who previously served as the Deputy Minister of Science and Technology and Higher Education.
Several media outlets have linked Harriet to Buti as her husband over the years, and it all started after the two attended the State Of the Nation Address (SONA) in the year 2017. Manamela, however, is yet to clarify her relationship with Buti (who is currently the Deputy Minister of Higher Education).
— Sowetan LIVE (@SowetanLIVE) February 9, 2017
For the records, Buti is the husband of the Deputy Speaker in the Gauteng legislature, Nomvuyo Mhlakaza-Manamela. The two share two kids together.