Players and officials from the Wanderers club. Photo: Wanderers Rugby Club South Africa via Facebook

The Golden Lions Rugby Union kicked off their disciplinary hearing last night (Wednesday) into an alleged racial incident that happened between the Under-21 teams of Roodepoort and Wanderers rugby clubs at the end of April.

The hearing was initially set to get underway last week but Wanderers asked for a postponement of the proceedings.

According to GLRU general manager Pieter Visser, the hearing started last night and is scheduled to continue next week, for as long as it takes to get to the bottom of what happened on the evening of April 26.

“District court magistrate Jerome Josephs will prosecute the case with attorney Boela van der Merwe as the chairman,” said Visser.

"No GLRU officials will be part of the proceedings to ensure independence.

“In all, 13 witnesses will be called to testify.”

Wanderers allege that their black players were abused during the match, and also physically attacked after the final whistle by players and spectators from Roodepoort.

Days after the incident, Wanderers released a statement which read, in part: “This is a constitutional rights issue and we hope that as affiliates of the GLRU the governing body will handle this matter with the appropriate level of urgency and firmness.”

Roodepoort Rugby Club also released a statement in early May and said their own investigation had found that none of their players were guilty of abusing Wanderers players.

“The club has conducted a preliminary investigation internally and has not been able to verify the claims made by Wanderers,” they said. “Wanderers have also not been able to supply us with evidence to prove their statements. As it stands, it is all conjecture and hearsay until all claims that have been made are proven or disproved by the current investigation of the GLRU Disciplinary Committee.”


The Star

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