EPRU keeps board member who called Mallett a racist

2019-07-11 07:30
Bantwini Matika
Bantwini Matika (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - The Eastern Province Rugby Union (EPRU) has opted against the removal of controversial board member Bantwini Matika.

Matika recently made headlines when he took to Facebook to share his displeasure at the news that former Springbok coach Nick Mallett was asked to help pick the next Southern Kings coach.

In the post, which has since been removed, Matika called Mallett a racist and claimed he was not in favour of transformation. Matika also swore and said there was institutional racism in rugby.

In response to the rant, Southern Kings chairperson Loyiso Dotwana released a statement calling for Matika, who also serves as the deputy president of the EPRU to be relieved from his duties.

However the EPRU, the amateur arm of the union, declined to remove Matika.

According to Netwerk24, the EPRU, which is represented by the clubs, said via a statement that Matika made his comments in his "own capacity".

"We as clubs believe that there was merit in some of the things that Matika said, even though the platform he used may not have been the most appropriate.

"There were rumours of more changes to the Kings coaching and management teams without our knowledge or participation. It's not acceptable," the EPRU statement read.

According to a spokesperson, Southern Kings shareholders will now hold a meeting where they will vote whether Matika should keep his position on the professional arm of the franchise's board.

Mallett, meanwhile, subsequently turned down the opportunity to feature on the panel who will pick the new Kings head coach.

The Kings also confirmed a seven-man panel to pick the new head coach, with over 50 applications received for the vacant position.

Seven-man Kings panel:

Loyiso Dotwana (Kings chairperson)
Rob Kempson (Director of High Performance)
Odwa Mtati (Enterprise Development Specialist)
Makhaya Jack (EPRU Board Member)
Kaunda Ntunja (SuperSport rugby commentator and former Junior Springbok captain)
Anthony Heugh (World Rugby Coaching Educator)
Glen Zamisa (Human Resources Specialist)


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