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Alleged racist incident at country club

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“We were totally shocked by this as the supervisor was not subjected to a polygraph test”

Picture: Facebook

A CASE of crimen injuria is being investigated by the Kathu police following an alleged racist incident at the Kalahari Country Club (KCC) in Kathu recently.

Police spokesperson Captain Olebogeng Twana said yesterday that the charges followed an alleged altercation between an employee and a supervisor at an institution in Kathu.

“No arrests have been made and the investigation continues,” Tawana said.

According to the Kimberley regional secretary of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), Cornelius Manhe, one of its members claimed that a white supervisor at the country club had called an employee the ‘k-word’.

“Discussions were held with the victim, the supervisor and two other employees who witnessed the incident. The supervisor was sent home, but returned to work a week later,” Manhe said.

He added that they were “shocked” to hear later that the manager of the club had apparently ordered the two witnesses to undergo a polygraph test.

“We were totally shocked by this as the supervisor was not subjected to a polygraph test,” he said.

As a result of this, according to Mahne, the two employees have since been charged and a disciplinary hearing is scheduled to take place today.

Manhe added that NUM was “shocked and perplexed” at the manner in which Kumba Mines “tolerates” racism.

According to Manhe the mining company owns the club, restaurant, golf course and other related facilities.

“NUM has requested a meeting with KCC management but the management refused, saying it was not necessary to have a meeting over the matter.”

Manhe said NUM would stage a protest march to the Kalahari Country Club. “We are still in the process of finalising the details. We will be showing solidarity with our members.”

The manager of KCC said yesterday that he was aware of the allegation but he had no details. “All I know is that a case was opened on Friday.”

He said that meetings between the club and NUM took place on a regular basis.

“There was a meeting scheduled for this week but has been postponed until April 9. If they want to bring up this issue, they are more than welcome to put it on the table.”

Sinah Phochana, Anglo American corporate communications manager, said yesterday that the company had a zero-tolerance policy for racism.

“Kumba Iron Ore has a zero-tolerance policy for racism and strongly condemns any acts associated with such. We will further investigate the matter according to our processes and policies.

“The Kalahari Country Club (KCC) is managed independently as a non-profit company, and Kumba is not directly involved in the day-to-day running of this facility.

“We will be speaking to both the management of the KCC and the NUM to ascertain the facts of the case so that all appropriate action can be taken,” Phochana said.