The victory means Mich D’Avray’s men move up to position 13 on the Absa Premiership standings with 28 points, leaving Craig Rosslee’s charges at the bottom with 22 points with five matches left to wrap up the 2014/15 season.
Both sides started the match cautiously as there were free-kicks resulting from tackles in the first 10 minutes, however, it was Manqele who unleashed a powerful shot in the 10th minute but it sailed over.
Following an unfair challenge on Luyolo Nomandela by Andile Mbenyane a few minutes later, the former delivered a set-piece to find defender Rudi Isaacs, but his header went over Mbongeni Mzimela’s posts.
However, it took the hosts 26 minutes to open their account when Manqele scored with his right foot from an assist by Siyabulela Shai.
The visitors could not find their way through the Chilli Boys defence led by the big Nigerian, James Okwuosa, in search of an equaliser and both sides went to the tunnel with United leading 1-0.
In the beginning of the second stanza, the Dube Birds pushed forward and their efforts resulted in Nomandela delivering a corner, but Thamsanqa Sangweni made a clearance.
In the 61st minute, Mbenyane released a thunderbolt but goalkeeper Sage Stephens parried his effort away from danger.
With 15 minutes to go, Rosslee pulled Nomandela off and introduced Felix Obada, and five minutes later Dikgang Mabalane’s set-piece hit the wall following a foul on Lantshene Phalane by Shai.
The introduction of Lerato Chabangu as an impact player for the visitors could not change their fortunes as the Port Elizabeth team held on to their lead.