Court tells Pinkie to leave Zola alone


By Stephan Bevan

Zola Budd won a court order this week preventing the other woman in her marriage break-up coming anywhere near her.

The South African-born runner - who was granted a UK passport to run for Britain in the 1984 Olympics - told a judge in Bloemfontein she feared for the safety of herself and her three children.

Budd, 39, told the court that her estranged husband's former lover, Agatha "Pinkie" Pelser, had phoned her at 2am and threatened her: "This is a fight to the death."

The love triangle involving the former 3 000m athlete, her husband Mike Pieterse and Pelser was revealed when Budd told why she wanted an order keeping Pelser away from her.

Telling the court she could not ignore Pelser's "emotional instability" any longer, she outlined a series of events that occurred after her husband ended his affair with Pelser.

He told his lover to move out of a house she was renting from him, but from then on, Budd told the court, she became increasingly worried about the other woman's behaviour.

According to a statement Budd gave the court, police were called to Pelser's rented house on July 1 after being told she had a gun and intended killing herself.

Police sources revealed at the time that there was a seven-hour stand-off as negotiators talked her out of her threat to shoot anyone who tried to enter the house.

It later emerged the gun belonged to Pieterse and was one of several items allegedly stolen 48 hours earlier from a house where he was living.

Pelser was subsequently charged with firearms offences and with breaking into Pieterse's house. She and a family member who was allegedly involved in the break-in appeared in court earlier this week, when the case was postponed until September 27 so that Pelser could receive a psychiatric assessment.

Meanwhile, Budd remained concerned about her safety. In her court statement she said she was worried that Pelser could endanger her and her children - Lisa, ten, and twins Michael and Avelle, seven.

Budd said her husband had given Pelser notice to vacate the house he had made available to her by Monday.

The judge issued an order preventing Pelser from contacting Budd or her children. Pelser was also ordered not to molest, assault or harm them in any way.

Budd, who lives in Bloemfontein, began divorce proceedings in March after she discovered her husband had been having an affair for a year.

Ten years ago she forgave him for a fling he had with a student, but she says there is no chance of that happening again.


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