Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth,27, is accused of being involved in an alleged racial motivated assault in Langebaan in August and the South African Human Rights Commision fully intends to make him an example by laying charges against the Springbok.
Enver Wilsnach, 42, and Shiyaad Smith, 21, claim Etzebeth assaulted them by striking them in the face with a firearm. A video surfaced on social media, purportedly taken by witnesses to the incident. In the video it is intimated that the Springbok was somehow involved. A man was reportedly taken to hospital after the altercation.
Etzebeth was still named in the Springboks World Cup squad just days after the allegations surfaced and was interviewed by the SAHRC before he left for Japan for the Rugby World Cup.
Etzebeth continues to deny any wrongdoing, firmly asserting that he has witnesses who will corroborate his story.
The South African Human Rights Commission announced on Wednesday their intent to bring charges against Eben Etzebeth after receiving a complaint from a Langebaan resident in August alleging that Etzebeth physically and racially abused him.
SA Rugby have opened an internal investigation into allegations that Eben Etzebeth racially abused a homeless man. They announced the probe shortly after news broke that the South African Human Rights Commission would bring charges against the Springbok lock.
SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) acting legal head Buang Jones promised the community of Langebaan that Eben Etzebeth would be used to set an example. Jones addressed a gathering of aggrieved residents and other interested parties on Thursday ahead of Friday’s bid to bring an Equality Court case against Etzebeth.
The SAHRC representative claimed that Etzebeth stands accused of having perpetrated similar acts of violence interlaced with racism.
Etzebeth will apparently be charged with assault and the use of racial slurs, but Jones says he should be charged with attempted murder. Jones encouraged the community to rally behind the case, which has come to represent the struggle against racism in Langebaan and beyond.