Ashwin Willemse will approach the Equality Court to deal with the ongoing fallout of his walkout during a live SuperSport broadcast on 19 May.
Willemse stormed off the SuperSport set during a live discussion after the Lions’ Super Rugby victory over the Brumbies, alleging that Nick Mallett and Naas Botha had ‘undermined’ and ‘patronised’ him.
An independent investigation, led by senior advocate Vincent Maleka, has since found that no racism was involved, putting Mallett and Botha in the clear to resume their studio duties in due course.
Willemse, who decided to not give testimony throughout the probe because he believed it was ‘not the forum to voice his concerns’, has now indicated he will approach the Equality Court to rule on the matter.
‘Ashwin did not participate in the process because it was a fruitless exercise. We believe the whole incident is rooted in racism. We are at an advanced stage with preparing those documents, and we will be approaching the Equality Court,’ his lawyer Nqobizitha Mlilo said.
‘We raised two important points: the first a question of law and a question of process. We asked what is the legal status of the inquiry that Adv Maleka was going to conduct?
‘The contractual relationship between Ashwin and SuperSport is that of an independent contractor – so what was the legal basis of that inquiry? The second issue was the manner in which Adv Maleka was going to conduct the inquiry.
‘He was going to speak to people who they suggest were part of that process in silo, speak to them individually without having any of their evidence tested in a cross-examination.
‘We believe the whole incident is rooted in racism. We are at an advanced stage with preparing those documents, and we will be approaching the Equality Court.’