Sascoc mum on sexual abuse allegations levelled against sports coaches

By Norman Cloete Time of article published Nov 29, 2020

Share this article:

South Africa’s highest sporting authority, the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee, is keeping mum on the sexual abuse allegations levelled against two swimming coaches and a netball coach. In the past three weeks, two KZN women have laid charges against their coach, almost 40 years after he allegedly sexually assaulted them in the 1970s and 1980s.

Last week, a Pretoria teenager’s family opened a case against a well-known swimming coach in the Pretoria area, claiming she was sexually abused by her coach.

In Bryanston, a young netball player has accused her coach of sexual abuse.

Swimming SA said it would not comment on the allegations against the coaches while the matters were under investigation. Sascoc has not responded to The Saturday Star’s queries.

The 16-year-old Pretoria teen is the third person who has laid criminal charges against swimming coaches.

Men and Women Against Child Abuse said, more women might come forward. The organisation is assisting the women through the criminal process.

I met Sascoc members earlier this week to discuss the allegations against its coaches.

Child Protection and Development Specialist for Women and Men Against Child Abuse Luke Lamprecht who attended the meeting with Sascoc said it had been very political.

“It didn’t look to me like they actually have a way forward. They were saying we must all work together but I don’t think they actually have a plan,” he said.

Sascoc did not reply to queries about the details of the meeting and has not said anything since the allegations came to light.

In a dramatic twist, a well-known Pretoria school called in their legal eagles after the coach at the centre of the Pretoria teen’s allegation posted an advertisement on Facebook about a swimming camp he was planning at the school in early January.

The school said it was unaware of the advertisement and was not consulted. It said the man was not granted permission for his club to host the swimming camp at the school.

“We can confirm that the identified swimming instructor was the swimming coach at the school until the suspension of lessons in March 2020, due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. Since then swimming lessons have not resumed. Following a newspaper report in a KwaZulu-Natal publication on Saturday, 21 November, relating to a pending investigation against a Pretoria swimming coach, the school held a meeting with the swimming coach on Monday, 23 November. As the results of this meeting, The school has severed all ties with the coach. This means the termination of all activities he was involved in, including advanced camp for early January 2021. This decision was taken in the best interest of our learners.

“We regard the safety of our learners as being of utmost importance ,and alternative swimming arrangements are being made for the upcoming swimming season,” the school said.

The swimming club in Pretoria did not comment.

Pretoria police spokesperson Kay Makhubela said: “Let's leave the investigating officer a chance to do his work please, we can't investigate criminal case through the media, when there is any development of the case we will let you know”.

The Saturday Star

Share this article: