A rugby club president accused of racism believes that “if an apology doesn’t count in this country then f**k all counts”, believes accusations are a ‘smear campaign

Nico Scholtz, of Brackenfell Rugby Club in Cape Town’s northern suburbs, said yesterday he had apologised to club members ahead of a tribunal’s verdict on his actions next week.

Scholtz resigned as club president last month after businessman and club sponsor Nico Hoepfner produced an audio recording of Scholtz using racist language.

At the time Hoepfner said the “H-word [Hotnot] and the K-word” were used on a daily basis in committee meetings and on the committee’s WhatsApp group.

Western Province Rugby Union president Thelo Wakefield said an investigation into the matter had been concluded and the findings handed to a tribunal.

Scholtz hit back at Hoepfner yesterday, accusing him of “bringing the club down. We must get rid of him or the club will go down. He is bad news. The club is in tatters.”

Hoepfner, who is a property developer, denied the allegations, calling them part of a “smear campaign” by two or three people in the club to discredit him.

He said: “The fact of the matter is I made it a family club. I spent more than R200,000 on a new kids’ play area and renovated the bathrooms, clubhouse and bar.

“I have a good relationship with the club .I’m not just going to let all of this racism and mismanagement continue.”

Scholtz said he had no ambition of getting back into rugby “if it was a problem for anyone. That doesn’t bother me. I’m more worried about my club than anything else.”


Iol News

PHOTO: Mitre Rugby ball. File photo


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