The SAHRC said that it will have a look at his amended papers, then it will indicate if it will oppose his application to have its decision set aside.
Cape Town – The SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has filed responding papers in the Gauteng High Court relating to Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth’s application to have the commission’s
decision to institute proceedings against him in the Equality Court set aside.
On Monday night SAHRC chairperson Bongani Majola said: “In terms of the application filed, Etzebeth has 10 days to decide whether or not to amend his papers. After that, we will have a look at his amended papers, then we will indicate if we will oppose his application to have our decision set aside.”
The litigation emanates from an alleged racial incident in the early hours of August 25 at the Die Watergat Pub in Langebaan on the West Coast. It is alleged that Etzebeth and a group of men assaulted, pistol-
whipped and racially abused four
people outside the pub.
The incident has sparked widespread condemnation and a series of protests in the area. The men: Enver Wilsnach, Yoraya Papier, Mogamad Smith and Kay Lee Brook are looking for compensation of more R1m. There were also calls to stop Etzebeth from playing in the Rugby World Cup in Japan.
The SAHRC filed a complaint in the Equality Court in Hopefield on behalf of the four against Etzebeth, but he has filed opposing papers in the Gauteng High Court, seeking to have a decision by the SAHRC set aside.
He also accused the institution of being biased against him.
Nigel Samuels, the lawyer for the victims, said: “I’m not representing the four in the Equality Court.
Yesterday, I met with the investigating officer who told me he is waiting on the results of ballistic tests done on Etzebeth’s firearm. All statements have been obtained.
“The docket will then be referred to the National Prosecution Authority for a decision on whether to prosecute or not. I’m awaiting the NPA’s response.”
Meanwhile the Khoisan Defence Campaign has indicated that the battle against Etzebeth is of national importance, and it wants the Equality Court to ban the term “hotnot” and have it declared hate speech.
Organiser Sammy Claassen said: “The word ‘hotnot’ has the same derogatory meaning as the K-word. We want the Equality Court to use this case to declare ‘hotnot’ as hate speech, coupled with criminal proceedings against those using the word.
“This matter is not about the four victims but about all the thousands of coloureds who suffer racial abuse daily. If the K-word is used, the perpetrators are dragged to court, and that is what we are calling for in the Etzebeth matter. The World Cup is finished, and it is time the court deals with Etzebeth.”
Police spokesperson Noloyiso Rwexana confirmed that cases of assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm, crimen injuria and pointing a firearm had been registered.