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Live Real Estate agency refuses contract with Gabriella Johnson after racism claim

Estate agent Gabriella Johnson has been dismissed after she allegedly racially discriminated against a potential tenant.

Estate agent Gabriella Johnson has been dismissed after she allegedly racially discriminated against a potential tenant.

Published Oct 28, 2021

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CAPE TOWN - Disgraced real estate agent, Gabriella Johnson, has been dumped after Live Real Estate announced that they would not be signing a franchisee contract with her.

Johnson had landed in hot water last week after she racially discriminated against potential tenant, Pol Osei, who had enquired about a CBD-located apartment.

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Johnson refused to proceed with a viewing and application process for the R17 000 Fountain Suites apartment located in the Cape Town CBD, stating that her client was “race-specific”.

Osei had taken to social media after a WhatsApp exchange with Johnson.

Live Real Estate chief executive, Brendan Miller, issued a statement stating that Johnson had not been employed by them at the time when she had attempted to conduct the leasing of the apartment.

“I am happy to confirm the outcome of (Tuesday’s) meeting with Johnson and our legal teams. The chairperson ruled that no employment contract existed between Live Real Estate and Johnson, and at no such time, could have presented herself as an employee of Live Real Estate.

“At the time of the incident between Johnson and Osei, Johnson was unlawfully engaged in soliciting a tenant for a listing that was mandated by Tyson Properties.

“On the question of her purchasing a Live Real Estate Franchise, the offer had not yet been signed at the time of the incident.

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“Based on the occurrences of the past week, I can confirm that we will not be signing a franchisee contract with Johnson,” said Miller.

Miller said the company had taken the matter very seriously and used it as a learning curve.

Osei and Johnson had not responded to enquiries by deadline.

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Following the incident, Osei had reported the matter to the Estate Agencies Affairs Board (EAAB) and reportedly dismissed an apology written by Johnson which she had posted to her social media platforms, but no personal apology to Osei.

Enquiries to the EAAB had not been answered by deadline.

Johnson’s apology read: “I wish to apologise unreservedly for acceding to my clients demand not to accept black tenants to rent their property. In hindsight, I should have objected to this request as it goes against my own values, the principles of the company I represent and our constitution.

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“It is (none) other than crude racism which I detest. It was my duty to call it out which I neglected to do. It was my oversight for which I take full responsibility and accountability. I trust that you will accept my sincere apology. I promise this is not who I am. I should have known better and pledge to do better,” Johnson had written.

Tyson Properties had previously said they would be taking legal action against their former employee Johnson who “attempted to conclude the deal for the specific listing, of her own accord, under their banner when she falsely acted and responded to Osei as if she were still in their employ despite resigning from the company a week prior”.

Cape Times

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