Mbalula wants privacy amid sex claims
Johannesburg - In the aftermath of weekend reports detailing his sex life, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula has asked for his privacy to be respected.
"I have consulted with my family and provided them with information and explanation for my acts and omissions in regard to the allegations that are swirling in the media," Mbalula said in a statement on Sunday.
Newspapers widely and graphically reported that Mbalula was the victim of extortion at the hands of a woman he had had an affair with and who claimed she had been impregnated by him.
"I have apologised to my family, particularly to my wife, as I should have known better.
"I have been trying to deal with this matter, in a private manner, for the past three months and when it became clear to me that this woman was prepared to extort money from me, I then decided to cease all communication with her as I was not prepared to be blackmailed."
Mbalula said claims by the woman, identified in reports as Joyce Omphemetse Molamu, that she was pregnant "remain unproven to me".
Mbalula unsuccessfully approached the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg on Saturday to prevent the details surrounding the affair from being published.
He became aware that this was a possibility when The City Press newspaper sent him questions relating to the matter.
However, his court application could only be heard at 18:00 - the print deadline of the paper.
In his statement on Sunday, Mbalula said he regretted subjecting his family to the media allegations and speculation.
"I apologise to the South African society, to the African National Congress and the South African Government. From now onwards this matter shall be dealt with as a private matter by my family.
"We therefore request the media and everyone else to afford the family time and space at this moment."
Mbalula said he had also decided not to lay any charges against Molamu for "extortion or blackmail".
It was reported that Molamu allegedly demanded R40 000 from Mbalula.