Complexity of issues very profound, says #AshwinWillemse

Ashwin Willemse speaking on air before walking off set on Saturday night. Photo: Screengrab

Ashwin Willemse speaking on air before walking off set on Saturday night. Photo: Screengrab

Published May 21, 2018


Ashwin Willemse has made his first comment since walking off a live SuperSport broadcast on Saturday night, saying that the issues that led to his dramatic exit “are very profound”.

Willemse said on air that he was “not going to be patronised by two individuals who played in apartheid” and felt that he had been undermined by Nick Mallett and Naas Botha following the Lions-Brumbies Super Rugby match.

SuperSport held a meeting with all three parties, as well as presenter Motshidisi Mohono, director Anthony Banks and producer Mandla Ntsibande on Monday at their headquarters at the MultiChoice building in Randburg.

MultiChoice South Africa chief executive Calvo Mawela and his SuperSport International counterpart Gideon Khobane addressed journalists on Monday evening, where they said that the matter was still being investigated, although they both stated that “no racism was picked up” in the discussions.

In a SuperSport statement later on Monday, Willemse said: “We had robust discussions in which I aired my views. I’m very appreciative of the process undertaken by SuperSport. The complexity of the issues are very profound.”

In the same statement, Mallett said: “I appreciated the opportunity to air my views. Clearly there are issues that must be grappled with. I am more than happy to collaborate and contribute to resolving this matter.”


Botha added: “This was a first meeting and we all had our say, which was helpful. We’ve invested in a process to resolve matters and I’m confident that we will get a satisfactory resolution.”

SuperSport said that the meetings was the first stage of the process to address Willemse’s walkout, and that “all parties have agreed to continue participating in this process”.


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