HRC must probe hockey racism - premier

2012-05-10 07:26
Mahikeng - The South African Human Rights Commission must investigate claims that a 17-year-old Brits school girl was turned away from hockey trials in Rustenburg because of her race, North West Premier Thandi Modise said on Wednesday.

Modise called the incident "an affront to our democracy" and efforts towards reconciliation".

It was also unacceptable that sporting events organised along racial lines were still held.

The Times reported that 17-year-old Rego Modise, a Grade 11 pupil at Wagpos Horskool, was told that hockey trials held at Hoërskool Grenswag were for white pupils only.

Neither Koen nor Wagpos principal Daan Neethling could be reached for comment, but Rev Peter Stans, CEO of Afrikaner Volkseie Sport, the organisers of Bokkie Week, said Modise had "definitely" not been invited for the trials, which were by invitation only. He said the week was for "Afrikaner" children only.

No player of a different race had ever attended Bokkie Week, Stans said.

Task team

Modise's spokesperson Lesiba Kgwele said North West education MEC Louisa Mabe had launched a task team to investigate the matter.

The Democratic Alliance said it wanted answers too.

DA sports spokesperson Winston Rabotapi said he had written to Afrikaner Volkseie Sport president Koos Marais for clarification on the requirements for attendance of the Bokkie Week trials.

If he did not receive a satisfactory response within three days, he too would ask the Human Rights Commission to investigate.

"This type of exclusion harks back to the days of apartheid and is destructive to efforts at national reconciliation."

He said sport could be a powerful tool for unity.

Read more on:    thandi modise  |  mahikeng  |  racism

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