Zelt's response: 'Have they forgotten the tale of the emperor's clothes'?
REACTION: Suspended Western Province Rugby Football Union President Zelt Marais is NOT going to go away quietly.
Despite several threats of legal action and a formal announcement that he is going to be brought before a disciplinary hearing by the South African Rugby Union, Marais has launched another blistering attack on the national body.
And he is not sparing the media either.
Marais, in responses to the announcement that SARU will charge him with ‘misconduct’, brazenly challenge the national body.”
He persisted with his claim that he is still legitimately the President of the provincial body, WPRFU.
“The President of WPRFU eagerly awaits the charge sheet,” Marais told @rugby365com.
This was in response to a letter to the WPRFU clubs, written by SARU President Mark Alexander on Saturday.
The letter accused Marais of spreading misinformation and “pipe dreams”, based on “unverified financial claims or any kind of due diligence” and compounding by the “illegitimate use of digital letterheads”.
“We will therefore be charging your suspended President, Zelt Marais, under the SARU code of conduct for bringing the game into disrepute,” Alexander said.
However, Marais audaciously stood his ground.
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“The President of WPRFU is not being investigated for fraud, theft and or embezzlement of funds,” he told @rugby365com.
“The President of WPRFU is a person of integrity, a person with impeccable ethical standards, and is beyond reproach.
“The President has not been suspended, as he did not commit any transgressions and or misdemeanours.
“The President is responsible for WPRFU and not for WPPR,” he said of the professional arm of the union – Western Province Professional Rugby (Pty) Ltd.
Marais claimed the moral high ground and – as he did in a previous letter to the WPRFU clubs – took exception to the fact the SARU has remained silent and appears to not have acted on the outcome of the arbitration process involving SARU CEO Jurie Roux and his former employer, Stellenbosch University.
The polemical figure, Marais, also challenged SARU to prove on what grounds they have the right to bring him before a disciplinary hearing.
“Secondly, I am supposed to be expelled/suspended as an active member/President, so on what lawful basis can I be charged,” Marais said.
“Thirdly I am to be tried and charged by the same people that have been implicated in various wrongdoings in regard to actual mismanagement and failures to deal with such mismanagement, i.e. that is the Jurie Roux saga.
“Fourthly, despite taking the time out to publicly state that I am to be charged, SARU still fails to address the Jurie Roux issue and how it is connected to the ‘administration’ of WPRFU and the sale of Newlands Stadium.
“Lastly, SARU has made various noises about court processes and it reacts with charges of misconduct.”
As he did in a previous statement, Marais also took aim at the ‘ludicrous’ mainstream media, whom he feels have not given him a fair shake.
“The media, like sheep, fails to see the wood for the trees.
“Is there any sensibility out there?
“Have they forgotten the tale of the emperor’s clothes?
“Surely we cannot be so blind that we refuse to see?”
Also worth reading
SARU to charge Zelt with misconduct
SARU CEO ordered to pay back ZAR37-million
Zelt is now even more isolated
Zelt is on the warpath
Net closing in around Zelt
Legal steps after Zelt’s ‘fraudulent’ claims
Newlands: Flyt watches from the sidelines
Newlands under the hammer … finally
Police investigating ‘fraud’ in Newlands saga
WPRFU: The rise and fall of a ‘war room’
McKeever bomb drops on WPRFU
The SARU and Zelt letter worth reading …