Spur finally apologises for video debacle – and announces the way forward

By Pieter van Zyl
28 April 2017

"Our response fell short of our own high standards. We should have done better."

In the months since the controversial event, everyone at Spur has had time to reflect on their actions before, said Pierre van Tonder of Spur Corporation in a statement.

"Spur would like to take this opportunity to unreservedly apologise to the South African public. Our response fell short of our own high standards. We should have done better. We expect it from ourselves to do better and we believe that the South African public deserve better," he wrote in a statement released on Thursday.

Spur found themselves thrust into the spotlight after a video showing a man physically threatening a woman in front of his and her children in one of their branches surfaced in March.

Read more: ‘We must ignore the woman abuse?’ Twitter reacts to shocking Spur altercation

The incident occurred at the Texamo Spur in the Glen Shopping Center in Johannesburg after an apparent scuffle between children in the play area.

Spur restaurants nationwide had since banned the man from their eateries. Spur, who has been mum on teh isse saya that they have launched plans to ensure the safety of customers and staff members in their restaurants.

They have put in place a 'national programme' to increase the child-minder to child ratio in their play areas during busy periods and na 're-education' campaign has also been put in place, which is aimed at strengthening the skills of their staff.

"Given the current socio-political climate in our country, regrettably no company can foresee an incident like this happening. After the incident, Spur has already and will continue to move swiftly to provide key personnel with the necessary conflict resolution skills," said Pierre.

They have also approached Professor Elmien du Plessis of the Faculty of Law on the Potchefstroom Campus of the North-West University to compile a panel of experts to investigate all aspects of the incident on 19 March 2017 and how it has been handled since.

Read more: Son has suffered emotional trauma – Spur mom

Elmien holds an LLB degree from Stellenbosch University and is a member of the NWU Human Rights Committee, as is an alumni of the South African Research Chair in Property Law.

"The panel will be completely independent and have unrestricted access to all facts and incidents related to the incident."

The team will make recommendations to Spur on how to rectify their shortcomings in how they can respond to similar incidents in the future.

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