South African media demand access to rugby racism probe

Cape Town- South Africa (PANA) -- The South African National Editors' Forum (Sanef) has called for full access to report on the investigation into the racism scandal that has rocked South African rugby.
Sanef says the idea of blocking the media from the hearings is "absurd and outrageous.
" It said any investigation into racism almost 10 years into South Africa's democracy is of importance to all South Africans.
The scandal broke out two weeks ago through a confrontation between a white player, Geo Cronje, and his black team-mate Quinton Davids.
Cronje was expelled from the World Cup training squad after he allegedly refused to share a room with Davids.
Cronje, who was ordered by Coach Rudolf Straueli to share a hotel room at a training camp in Pretoria with Davids, reportedly refused saying he would not use the same bathroom, toilet or shower as Davids.
An official investigation into the matter is expected to begin in Cape Town on Thursday.
But the South African Rugby Football Union is attempting to bar the media from the hearings, which could be explosive.
Sanef said barring the media from the King inquiry into alleged rugby racism made a mockery of openness and transparency.
"Sanef finds it absurd and outrageous that the idea of blocking media access is even being considered," the organisation said.
"There can be little doubt about the national importance of this investigation and the public's very real interest in its outcome.
It is not a private matter.
"

09 september 2003 17:42:00




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