Matthew Theunissen

Cape Town - The SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) says it has received complaints from the public over Noordhoek resident Matthew Theunissen’s racist Facebook rant earlier this week.

Theunissen, a former Stellenbosch University student, had slammed the government for Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula’s decision to ban international tournaments due to the slow pace of transformation in rugby, cricket and athletics.

SAHRC spokesperson Isaac Mangena said apart from Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille’s complaint, other members of the public had also come forward to report the matter.

On Wednesday Mangena said the commission was assessing the complaints against Theunissen, who called government officials “a bunch of K***** S”.

On Tuesday, Theunissen went on CapeTalk radio to apologise, saying he was angry at not seeing international sports and had been in a “bad place” when he made the Facebook post.

Mangena said: “We’ll make an assessment based on the investigation. We’ve heard that he has apologised, but we still need to get in touch with him.”

On Tuesday, Theunissen met officials from De Lille’s Inclusive City desk.

“Officials explained to him why we referred the matter to the SAHRC. Officials highlighted our Inclusive City campaign and conveyed to him that there is no place for racism in our society,” said De Lille’s spokesperson Zara Nicholson.

On Wednesday, Mbalula said many South Africans recognised the inequalities in sports and his department had received messages of support for its stance on transformation.

Cape Times