Another racist attack at rugby

2008-09-02 00:00

Johannesburg — Another alleged racial incident during Saturday’s Springbok rugby Test at Ellis Park has emerged.

Following publicity over the attack on Ziningi Shibambo, Steven Parker of Fourways said yesterday that wasn’t the only racist incident.

Two whites, apparently a father and son-in-law, tackled a black man in a beer garden outside the stadium.

“At about 7.30 pm, I saw two men hitting a helpless black man while others laughed,” said Parker. “I asked them what the problem was and they said the black man stole their beer.

“I offered to buy them another beer so they could relax, but they weren’t interested.”

The two men confronted Parker, saying “we’re all white here and now you’re taking the k****r’s side”.

Parker hit the older man and a fight broke out. When the police arrived within minutes, four men were on the ground.

“I didn’t hit them to hurt them. But we have to get rid of people like that. They hit him because he is black,” he said.

The son-in-law came to Parker in tears later and told him his fiancée had been raped by black men.

“I told him to go for counselling. That black man was not the man who raped his fiancée,” said Parker.

Ricky Meyer, the managing director of the stadium, said they are aware of the incident and are trying to identify the men.

Parker took cellphone photos of the incident, which will be used in the investigation.

Meyer denied suggestions that there was not enough security. “There were about 800 ordinary guards. We also had about 175 Metro police and 260 SAPS members.”

Saturday’s match served as a test run for event security during the 2010 World Cup.

Several people said these sort of incidents are “normal” and are being unneccesarily portrayed as racism.

Johan Bekker of Krugersdorp said he was attacked outside the stadium two weeks ago by two black men who called him a “white bastard” and threw bricks at him, breaking his hand. He spent two days in hospital. “But I didn’t say anything about racism,” he said.

SA Rugby Union (Saru) spokesman Andy Colquhoun said they are not making an exception of the latest incident. “We would have been just as concerned if he was white. Unfortunately, there is a culture where people keep quiet about these incidents.”

Saru president Oregan Hoskins said: “There were 54 000 people in the stadium enjoying a thrilling Springbok victory, but it takes the racist actions of a tiny handful to sour the occasion.”

See related article" "K-word hurled at woman"

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