The plan by ANC MPs Butana Komphela and Cedric Frolick’s to “take away” stadiums from rugby unions is “not ANC policy”, the Afrikaans morning paper Beeld reported on Friday morning.
The paper said South African Rugby Union is considering meeting the ANC’s parliamentary leadership about this plan, while the Freedom Front Plus on Thursday complained to the speaker of the National Assembly, Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde.
Khotso Khumalo, ANC MP and parliamentary political head of the party, said Government could not simply take away stadiums as proposed by Komphela and Frolick.
“It’s not our party’s policy to take away stadiums from any sporting code. On top of that big sponsors like Absa and FNB have interests in the stadiums. We won’t do it,” he said.
The party’s national leadership agreed through spokesperson Brian Sokutu.
“We won’t support anything like that. Issues about which sporting codes use which stadiums should be resolved in the sporting fraternity. It’s not our policy (to take away stadiums),” he said.
It is the third time that Komphela is repudiated by his own party.
During last month’s much-talked about sports indaba, the ANC issued a statement saying Komphela’s statements are not in line with ANC policy.
Komphela was also chastised last year after threatening that Government would take away the Springbok rugby team’s passports.
On Wednesday, Komphela said after a meeting of the parliamentary portfolio committee on sport: “We are on our way to taking away all stadiums from rugby…nothing will stop us”.
Frolick called rugby racist and a “delinquent sport”.
Willie Spies, Freedom Front Plus MP, told the National Assembly that Komphela and Frolick are “abusing parliamentary privilege”.
He said several recent statements point to this, including comments that a rugby administrator “does not care when black people die”, an accusation that the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) is full of “whites and Indians” and an allegation that an MP has a “white mentality” and “Boer manners”.