Caster: SA deserves the truth

2009-10-29 14:03

Johannesburg - The government must "extract the truth" on the Caster Semenya matter from Athletics South Africa, the ANC said on Thursday.

"We also encourage our Minister (Sports Minister, Makhenkhesi Stofile) to institute a mechanism of extracting the truth from ASA regarding their role in the Caster debacle. Both in South Africa and in Berlin," said ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu.

"South Africa deserves nothing else but the truth, Mthembu told a media briefing on the findings of a task team probing the matter.

"... (The government may) use any legal instruments to extract the truth from ASA," he said.

Last month, ASA president Leonard Chuene admitted lying to the South African public about not having any knowledge of gender tests conducted on Semenya in Pretoria in August.

He said that ASA's deception on the matter was intended to protect Semenya's confidentiality.

"I now realise that it was an error of judgement and I would like to apologise unconditionally," he said.

However, briefing the National Assembly's sport and recreation committee on October 20, he denied lying about not having any knowledge of gender tests.

"We learnt from the past that we were called liars even if we have put everything on paper. But they said 'you lied'. I don't understand."

Mthembu said it was difficult to trust anything emerging from the ASA.

Task team member Winnie Madikizela-Mandela said: "I don't think any of us here would appreciate being lied to... when a respectable body lies through their teeth... and then they justify their lies saying they were trying to protect Caster." This made it untrustworthy.

Mthembu said the task team would hand over the matter to the sports ministry for further investigation.

"We think they are better placed as government... to pursue the matter," he said.

The party would hand over the "volumes" of information it had gathered in its probe, which included interviews with the ASA, Semenya herself and other professionals.

"Throughout these consultations, the ANC's position about Athletics South Africa has not changed, in fact we are more convinced that ASA and their doctor have a case to answer.

"In this instance, in relation to the Caster issue, they performed dismally."

When asked whether the ASA board should be dissolved, Mthembu responded: "You can't be targeting an individual on the sins of the entire board."

At an ASA special general meeting last month, its leadership was given a unanimous vote of confidence.

Mthembu expressed hope that the board would concede it had "messed up" and take the appropriate action.

"When the board came out with nothing... they disappointed us. They came out of that meeting as if nothing had happened... as if they had not brought disrepute... through lying to the president of the country... to all of us.

"They might decide on their own to do something. They must take the President (Jacob Zuma) into their confidence... they must take the nation into their confidence," he said.

Madikizela-Mandela said Semenya seemed to be in a position to "deal with the situation", referring to the 18-year-old's emotional state.

"When we met her... she was extremely relaxed and very happy and seems to have found her own way of dealing with this quagmire," she said.

Mthembu revealed that the Semenya family was also considering taking legal action.

"We will continue to support her even if they [the Semenya family], which is very probable, take on those who violated their kid... and if they so decide we will be there.

"... To be 18 and be subjected to such and still smile... she (Semenya) is an amazing character," Mthembu said.

Semenya won the 800 metres in a time of 1:55.45 in Berlin on August 19.

However, the significant improvement in her time, her masculine physique and deep voice, brought her gender into question.

In September, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) ordered gender tests on Semenya.

Australian media reports quoting leaked documents later suggested that it had been found that the athlete had no ovaries or uterus, but internal testes which produced testosterone.

The IAAF said it was reviewing the results and would decide next month whether Semenya could continue competing in women's events.

IAAF president Lamine Diack recently cancelled a meeting with Sport Minister Makhenkhesi Stofile to find a resolution to the matter, Mthembu said this meeting had been rescheduled.

The ANC has called on the IAAF to declare null and void the gender verification results conducted both in South Africa and in Berlin.


  • the man - 2009-10-29 14:24

    fristly yes the IAAF must declare the gender varification null and void who doem this IAAF federation think they are??? they must not get clever with us.secondly if there are questions to be answered they must be answered in private behind closed doors and relative action like suspension with pay must be handed down to the guilty parties in ASA, but i stress this must be handled behind closed doo out of the media eye as this issue is far above all you readers pay grades.

  • Jo - 2009-10-29 14:25

    I'm so tempted to be proud of us today, but I don't know what madness tomorrow will bring. I'll wait to see if these good words translate into good actions.

  • Johncarlos - 2009-10-29 14:32

    "Mthembu said it was difficult to trust anything emerging from the ASA.". Now they know how we feel about the ANC

  • Blaq Brother - 2009-10-29 14:32

    Not to worry. Malema will make Caster run as girl again, or he risk failing his party and ANCYL.

  • J - 2009-10-29 14:38

    There is no such thing as a liar in South Africa. The Truth is what you feel like saying

  • @ the man - 2009-10-29 14:45

    what planet are you from? the IAAF are in every right to have the gender tests performed - how it was handled by ASA though was appalling! Government has finally made a clear statement what they would like to see being done, and then you make the comment about suspension WITH PAY?! If you've brought the sport and country into disrepute why should you still get paid?! As for my pay grade - it's of no consequence to this debate - ASA lied to the country (which includes me), the country deserves answers.

  • Jack @ the man - 2009-10-29 14:47

    Yawn - your comments are becoming so boring now... same old drivel over and over. On the positive side, it does seem that finally some common sense has prevailed and that the ANC has finally seen through all the lies and deception in this farce, I do hope they now follow through. The question remains though, why did Minister Stofile say he could not intervene and now he has been tasked to intervene, did another gravy train rider suddenly realise he has to earn his salary? Maybe the ANC task team could look into his lack of action thus far and push for some decisive action?

  • Sonny@ the man - 2009-10-29 14:47

    "suspension with pay" My arse! Fire them ens of story.

  • davey - 2009-10-29 14:54

    What a joke!!! Poor old Winnie complaining about people lying and not being honest. Sorry but were you not involved in a kidnapping and murder trial? Did you tell the truth then? Pleaser Winnie who you trying to fool.Another example of how the ANC comrades do,say and act as they wish.No scruples or integrity.

  • Siyabonga - 2009-10-29 14:55

    @ the man you twit ....

  • Martin - 2009-10-29 14:56

    @the man.He He He He!!!! You are so stupid.

  • @THE MAN - 2009-10-29 15:04

    The IAAF is the international regulating body of athletics, that is who they think they are. The uneducated bumpkins that call themselves ASA are FULLY to blame for this debacle and ALL injustices suffered by our child! The whole lot should be tarred and feathered for their despicable actions and self-interest, never mind making us the laughing stock of the world. IDIOTS!

  • darkwing - 2009-10-29 15:09

    I so stupid, you mus not be clever wif me. World, be afraid be very afraid. this IAAF mus not com an take my gender

  • Sambok - 2009-10-29 15:14

    A step in the right direction.... @the man: you seem to confuse some of us with your co-workers. Your president wishes he had my pay grade. Or do you see "kick-backs" and "royalties" as part of a pay grade? It is time people are held accountable for their actions. No more "golden handshakes", no more silver spoons.

  • Peet - 2009-10-29 15:24

    @the man. Why behind closed doors? Leonard Chuene didn't lie behind closed doors. He didn't blame whites behind closed doors. He didn't cause k@k beyond all recognition behind closed doors! And why suspension with pay??? Are you mad??? You sound like julius malema! Your spelling also suggests that...

  • Jay - 2009-10-29 15:28

    @Whinnie - how many have you and your ex husband killed during the Apartheid years? You should be behind bars and not out in public causing trouble as usual! Last time I checked you belong to a so called "professional body" that does nothing but lie through it's teeth! it's called the ANC!

  • Jack Niekelsen - 2009-10-29 15:35

    The truth? You can't HANDLE the TRUTH!!

  • Eish - 2009-10-29 15:41

    @the man. Shame, behind close doors we will now not act like id10ts. So it is okay to be openly liars and id10ts, but behind closed doors they are now not, do not know what your paygrade is but with your english spelling, probably not worth looking at you Matric Results. English Proverb : A half truth is a whole lie. There is hope for this country. Viva!

  • me - 2009-10-29 15:41

    I really think that most South Africans dont care. Get over it!

  • Karen - 2009-10-29 15:42

    If ASA had wanted to protect Semenya they should have done the tests and dealt with the results before sending her to Berlin. All they could see was a medal opportunity being lost. And could the ANC please explain to me how declaring gender test results null and void is going to make the problem go away? How can we hope to build a nation when we are lead by a bunch of ostriches who won't deal with reality. Anything which happens which they don't like brings cries of "racism", "discrimination" etc.

  • Freedomfighter - 2009-10-29 15:53

    Liarnard Chuene and his ilk in the ASA have treated this poor girl absolutely abominably. Their ruthless pursuit of Gold Medals at all costs and even at the cost of an 18 year old girl's dignity, has brought shame on our entire country. Not only did they then lie about their nefarious agenda, they pulled out the race card and turned this into a massive stick to beat the white population with, whipping the anti-white sentiment into a frenzy of abuse and threats of violence. For what? To cover up their own criminal behaviour and nothing else. They didn't care about Caster Semenya, they didn't care that they were destroying our national image and they were callously cynical in the way the encited racial hatred to cover their tracks. Their behaviour is an atrocity and a crime against Caster Semenya human rights, the white population who had nothing to do with this mess and all South Africans in general. And we all know what President Zuma has said should be done with criminals....

  • cammie - 2009-10-29 15:54

    No surprise whatsoever to find "the man" putting in his tuppence worth again; as said by others - you post the same drivel all the time!! Why are you so filled with hatred? I asked this question yesterday on another of News24's topics and you did not respond. Do you find it impossible to work in the "here and now" and build a future for all our children? Yes, apartheid was wrong - we've admitted that, but it would seem that nothing is going to appease you. South Africa will never be able to move forward whilst there is such hatred from the left of both the black and white communities. Let's all put our energies into making our country what it can very well be - ALL South Africans need to do it, be they black, white or brown. he ASA was right, whilst denying the IAAF the right to conduct these tests.

  • Cire - 2009-10-29 16:57

    Only in Africa! I don't trust ASA ur the ANC. Semenya is a victim of both.

  • geejay - 2009-10-29 17:12

    Since when where any ministers in any country interested in the truth. They are interested in one thing only and that is always to justifytheir own stupid outbursts and agression based on lies. The world over they are the same. There should be a seperate state for politicians where they all reside and bulls**t each other every day, just let the rest of us get on and build a better world.

  • ImpartialCanuck - 2009-10-29 17:28

    @the man - don't know what planet you have been visiting, but the IAAF is an international body to whom all countries are members - they decide the RULES!!! If the ASA can't meet the international standards then their athletes will not be allowed to compete - simple mate!! I supported your wonderful athlete when this news first broke, as it was not handled well by the IAAF, but the fault seems to clearly lie with the ASA for not fulfilling it's obligations to the IAAF and your athletes. Fire the lot and start again........ It is the world who wants answers from the ASA, not just South Africans! Believe me, many of us have pay scales far higher than those ASA incompetents - anyhow, why is it relevant??

  • Alan Ingram SA - 2009-10-29 17:30

    As the saying goes: "how do you know when a Black man is lying".....when he opens his mouth !!!! The ASA and the ANC have just proved that the saying is true !! Sports Minister, Makhenkhesi Stofile is just as big a lair and ass hole as the ASA. The only people who can tell the truth to all South Africa is the IAAF !

  • fellow 800 athlete - 2009-10-29 18:49

    Thanks cammie. We run together. We can work together..

  • proxy - 2009-10-29 21:47

    I am sick and tired of hearing about this caster case. it is a private matter and it should be sorted accordingly.The media should back off,they have informed us far too much already. The are more pressing priorities for this country.

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