December 3, 2013
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Springbok LogoCivil rights organisation AfriForum has warned the South African Rugby Union (SARU) in a letter that its decision to implement racial quotas in the Vodacom Cup series next year would constitute a violation of the International Rugby Board’s prohibition on any form of racial discrimination. SARU was also informed in the letter that the Olympic Charter, with which rugby has to comply as Olympic sport, explicitly prohibits racial discrimination.

According to Kallie Kriel, CEO of AfriForum, it is not in the interest of South African rugby, players or the supporters of the sport that SARU adopted a policy which may lead to disciplinary action by the IRB. “AfriForum is doing everything in its power to convince SARU to comply with the rules of the IRB and abandon the quota system.”

 In terms of By-Law 3 of the IRB rules and regulations, the IRB is compelled to prevent any form of racial discrimination in rugby. IRB Regulation 20 also stipulates that any action which may be construed as racial discrimination will be regarded as misconduct. In terms of By-Law 7, not only SARU is subject to the above; the provincial rugby unions resorting under SARU must adhere to these principles as well. In terms of By-Law 9.4(r) the IRB may institute disciplinary steps against any rugby body that violates these rules.

Kriel has pointed out that AfriForum supports rugby development, and wants everyone to have the opportunity to participate in the sport. “A quota system, however, does nothing to develop new players. Institutions simply import existing black players in order to comply with the quota requirements. Rugby unions should focus on development programmes instead of discriminating against certain players on the basis of race,” Kriel said.

Kriel alleged that a quota system based on race disadvantages black players to the same extent as their white peers, because the validity of their inclusion in teams is questioned. Instead of playing the numbers game in a top-down manipulation of the sport, SARU and the Government should address their own failure to develop young black talent at school level.


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  1. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Ag this is just bullshit. There is a difference between racism and affirmative action. FFS if people do not know that by now then I don’t know.

    I do not agree with this quotas in rugby but they are putting it under the BBE umbrella and even if the IRB had any balls to do something they would not have mattered.

    If the ANC clowns force them to implement that into rugby then it is that.

  2. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    @Jacques(Bunny): Sorry meant discrimination and racism.

  3. avatar Craven says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    “Rugby unions should focus on development programmes instead of discriminating against certain players on the basis of race,” Kriel said.

    Please tell me how that has worked out over the past 20 years?

  4. avatar Aldo says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 3:57 pm


    it hasnt worked at all, but rather than implement quotas, they should force the unions to invest money in the development of young players for their teams. Force them to show black on white that they are developing young black talent. That they are actively seeking young black stars for the future. Actively work to change the minds of the black people that rugby is an elitest white man’s sport. Before they start doing that and us white folk support those efforts, we’ll have to have quotas sadly.

    The unions are lasy, they would rather window dress than develop. SARU is lasy and as much as it pains me to say this, us white people continiously say we would support development fully, we would love to see a black guy play if he deserves it, we still feel more comfortable if it is a white guy. Perceptions needs to be changed, and that is a fact. You can argue all you want, you can say you dont care about the colour of the guys skin, but listen to yourself when a black guy plays poorly (I include myself here, as I react that way), we blame it on the fact that he is black. Not a mistake, not just he is an idiot. No, he is poor or made the mistake because he is black. If we are all honest with ourselves, all of us, we’ll see why 20 years in, we still have quotas.

    All we do is speak when we say we support development of black young players, yet when money gets spent to develop those same young black players, we complain that it is unfair against young white kids. We need to decide what we prefer and then stop complaining. Do we want window dressing or do we want development, if we then say develop young black talent from grassroot level, stop complaining around the braaivleis fire that more money gets spent on young black talent than on young white talent. It needs to happen somewhere, somewhere we need to get black support for the Boks, and it all starts with us. What do we want. Do we want to complain about quotas or development, surely we cant complain about both? Because that is what we are currently doing and Im again saying we, because reading this article caused me to sit back and think. It is a hard change, but it is a change that is needed. Either that or we can kiss our Boks goodbye, because in the long run that is what will happen.

  5. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    Zzzzzzzz-there goes the South Africans again-
    Off on the colour thing-again-zzzz

  6. avatar DavidS says:
    December 3rd, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    @Jacques(Bunny): There is a difference between racism and affirmative action.

    Lol… reaaallllyyy

    One is discrimination intended to advantage one race above another and the other is….

    the same…

  7. avatar grootblousmile says:
    December 4th, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    @Jacques(Bunny): We’re talking discrimination here…

    What else but unadulterated DISCRIMINATION on Racial lines is BEE, Affirmative Action and Quotas?

    Does my 20 year old son (who grew up in the new South Africa) stand the same chance as his not so white peers in getting a job, a bursary and as an enrepeneur / businessman a tender or government or corporate contract?

    The answer is simple, no he does not… and that, Bunny, is DISCRIMINATION based on race.

    Quotas do exactly the same, there is no doubt that it is flawed to the bone.

    Go measure South Africa’s “Democracy” against democratic standards and tell me if South Africa qualifies as a true democracy… and the only conclusion you once again come to is NO, it is not.

    The Mail & Guardian, in an article called RICH SCHOOL, POOR SCHOOL, did an interesting take on facilities in the round-about 24 793 public schools on 28 September 2012…

    Here are just some of the findings, according to the latest national education infrastructure management study released by the department of basic education in 2011, there are 24 793 ordinary public schools. It showed that:

    • 3 544 schools have no electricity supply and 804 an unreliable electricity supply;

    • 2 402 schools have no water supply and 2 611 an unreliable one;

    • 913 schools do not have any ablution facilities, and 11 450 still use pit-latrine toilets;

    • 2 703 schools have no fencing;

    • 79% are without any library and only 7% have stocked libraries;

    • 85% have no laboratory and only 5% have stocked laboratories;

    • 77% are without any computer centres and only 10% have stocked computer centres; and

    17% of schools lack any sporting facilities. That equates to about 4 214 schools.

    Government, both Provincial and Central, has the task and obligation to provide not only Education but facilities and recreation and Sporting Facilities to South Africans, that is WHY they govern!

    Leveling the playing field so that opportunities are presented for all to compete on a good footing (equal footing the end goal) is their task and mandate, quotas do not address these imbalances, it just perpetuates it ad infinitum.

    Now look at the figures I gave in this comment… one can deduce from that, that at least 20% of South Africans are not provided the opportunity to get a proper education. The figure is probably much, much higher than that in the final analysis and taking other factors into consideration.

    How economically active / successful can that 20% or more eventually realistically become?
    What life skills do they have?
    How do they manage to get out of the poverty circle from that horrible start in life?
    How does all of this affect unemployment, crime or a successfull economy in the country?
    How deep is the real impact on social decay?

    … and how hard does it affect how many sports men and women are lost along the way…

    I suppose the deep question is how has the situation improved or worsened compared to pre 1994 (and I’m not climbing on the bandwagon of the previous political dispensation by saying this). The South African challenge is to not rest until things improve year to year, until we have a proper Education System, Proper Sporting facilities – under whatever government of the day and until we invest enough in the future of this country.

    It ultimately is a long term solution, which could take a generation or 2 to achieve… but we could have been 18 or 19 years down that road already, had all things been equal.

    Jeeez, I’m not a politico… was actually hard to write kakkas like this… but at least it came out of the hart!

  8. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 4th, 2013 at 11:45 pm

    Well said.
    We will never catch up.
    Absorb it.
    Life is short.

  9. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 6:37 am

    @DavidS: You guys are not getting me, I am not saying their is, all i am saying it is a loosing battle because that is what they will bring to the table if anything comes from it.

    You would be stupid to think that you would win this battle with ANC clowns if you dare.@grootblousmile: You can bring all your nice stats on it, again I am saying that they just put previously disadvantage in front of that and all your nice figures goes out the door.

    Except it, in RSA we will not live to see the day that they will not put the BEE shit in front of everything that whites does or wants to do.

    That’s why I am in Zambia and making a shit load of money without all the rapes, murder and fear for your live and the same reason I will send my son to the UK to get a change to excel in sport.

  10. avatar Craven says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:15 am


    I hear you, no need to convince me. My point is that we can scream and moan as much as we want, after more than 20 years of supposed equality in rugby we still see only a handful of non-white players in our professional teams, the bare minimum to calm down politicians, and that is not good enough.

    How on earth can someone like Bryan Habana, one of the best wings this country has every produced, still be counted as a statistic when numbers are discussed? That is wrong in so many ways.

    And please, the National team is not the place to try and play the numbers game, the national coach should not have to worry about things like that. But provincial structures should have no excuse.

  11. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:46 am

    @Craven: It is just a sad state of affairs… :noshake:

  12. avatar Aldo says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:56 am

    I wasnt actually trying to convince you craven, just a pet grievance of mine. As much as I hate quotas, as much as it is nothing more than reverse apartheid as much as it irks me, somewhere along the line we probably need to decide what we want to complain about.

    One look at the figures grootblousmile posted, will tell you the anc has made nothing but empty promises to the masses, one look at participation of black people in rugby will tell you that it is seen as a white sport. But then the minute a union or government does spend a bit more on these black kids, we also complain. Rightfully so as well, as most of the tax money in this country comes out of the white pocket, so we want our kids to take advantage of it, yet then we cant complain about quotas, as we are not willing to see our money spent to enhance the life of the black poor people. It is a vicious circle that just runs around and around. Before it will change, we must change, the white that doesnt want his tax money spent on the poor black kid, the anc that only spends tax money on the poor black kid to get votes, a government that forgets the poor white people that stay in squatter camps. Good luck with that, so I guess quotas it is for now. And before anyone comments here and says I dont mind my tax money being spent on black people, it is only the corruption that bothers me, think back to your last braai with friends and think of the complaints about you having to pay for electricity, yet black people get it for free. Im part of the one’s complaining, so not pointing any fingers, just saying that we are right there at the root of the problem, along with every corrupt, uncaring government official. Maybe proper government will make the complaints less, I cant say, Im just not really the deep intillectual type who spends time thinking of all the problems and how they can be solved.

    As for Zambia bunny, enjoy it. I might sound stupid, but I believe in a future for South Africa and want to be part of building that future. So I’ll stay put. The minute the church starts taking its rightfull place and the 80% people in this country claiming to be Christian, starts being Christian, this country will prosper like no other in the world. Im eagerly awaiting that day.

  13. avatar Aldo says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 8:03 am

    And before you take offense bunny, I have no problem with you going to Zambia. It doesnt make you a coward, you made a decision that is best for your family and circumstances. Im not blaming anyone for leaving, just gave my reason for rather staying.

  14. avatar Morné says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 9:24 am

    I wonder why Mr. Kriel did not touch on the fact that quotas for unions were abolished at around 2006, where they could without fear of a number qualification system, develop the game in their own regions, in their own time, using methods they believed works best for them.

    Eight years where they were given the freedom to do this and look where we are.

    Now you can of course also believe unions have no responsibility to develop players from the PDI group, that whites were not historically privileged in the game of rugby or even that Apartheid never existed – or – you can view this as something that is a responsibility for all organisations including rugby unions, that opportunities do need (or needed) to be created and in almost a decade, unions failed horribly.

    Why did Mr. Kriel and his party not warn unions 2, 3, 4 or 5 years ago that they have a responsibility? That in order to get to a point where merit selection is all we have, work needs to be done? That to avoid a discriminate system like quotas sustainable programs need to be adopted giving themselves 4 or 5 years to reap the rewards of such programs?

  15. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 10:01 am

    @Aldo: None Taken, I went because I could not find a job in SA because I am white, In Zambia they do not care about skin colour just the knowledge you bring to their county.

    The fact that we do not have any murdering, raping, steeling or any of those things is a plus but I do love my country and it will always be my country.

  16. avatar Boertjie says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    This problem runs much deeper.
    Players of colour don’t want to be seen
    as quotas.

    Breyten Paulse took sides against quotas on 365,
    but he is only the latest objector – there are
    many, as you must be aware.

    What is the solution, and it especially effects
    some of the northern provinces – lack of money
    and lack of black players.

    BTW the highest court recently rejected quotas in
    the case of a white captain who was the best qualified for promotion and was sidelined because of her race.
    This is going to lead to a multitude of court cases.

  17. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    We will probably disband courts next.

    I have read the posts
    However i feel less involved than before.

    I left after the military and in total
    I have worked in18 countries in twelve years.
    I have settled in France and i cant see myself even
    considering a return.

    Whenever i talk to South Africans ,
    it is a question of time before race pops into the conversation
    or the reference to it.
    But its a constant .

    To live my life in relative peace
    away from that constant allows
    me to grow differently than I would have
    if i never stayed.

    It is easier to be tolerant when your daily existence
    is not marred by issues of race,colour and religion.

    Whether or not one chooses to leave your country
    or not
    is an individual choice.

    I like living with my family in a first world country.
    It permits me to spend more time living my life
    than being forced to spend the time complaining
    about the reasons I’m being impeded to live it.

    And generally,
    The further im from South Africa
    the nicer i become.

  18. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    If any person is in a team
    for any reason merit
    its wrong.
    End of it.

  19. avatar Boertjie says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:23 pm


    Maybe we should send Dawie to France?

  20. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    For any reason except merit even:)
    Spell check on devices are a fokken riller

  21. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    @Duiwel: True, the one thing we have as a family since 2010 is time together and having actually time for each other.

    It is great that my boy does most things with me which we never had in SA. The mad rush and turning each house into Fort Nox was not my idea of living.

    I was lucky to get this break, making great money and have about 60% more time with my family.

    Zambia is not 1ste world but must say Zambia gives you quality of life.

  22. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    OomD have so much potential that he would
    prosper anywhere.

    Even after all the strife he has had
    one can never question his passion for rugby.
    He has a general sense of fairness that is sometimes less visible
    when he goes off
    I believe it is always present

  23. avatar Duiwel says:
    December 5th, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    wherever you are,
    quality of live is what to strive for.
    I have managed to find a balance i can live with here
    and I am proud to see my family grow
    without the constant distraction
    of race,color,religion or danger.

    They seem more balanced than I were
    at their age

  24. avatar Timeo says:
    December 6th, 2013 at 1:52 am

    BEE is and always was a very bad idea.

    It should have been just EE. Require all institutions to have special programs for providing a leg up for economically disadvantage persons of any color. The bulk of the resources would have been directed at education, nutrition and healthcare and the bulk of the beneficiaries would have been poor blacks. BEE disproportionally benefit persons who are privileged already.
    The story is the same in rugby. Any player that made it professionally cannot possibly be under privileged any more.

  25. avatar JT_BOKBEFOK! says:
    December 6th, 2013 at 10:32 am

    In terms of By-Law 3 of the IRB rules and regulations, the IRB is compelled to prevent any form of racial discrimination in rugby. IRB Regulation 20 also stipulates that any action which may be construed as racial discrimination will be regarded as misconduct.

    hmmm so why do the IRB let NZ off the hook with their so called Maori Team?? :Dawie:

  26. avatar Boertjie says:
    December 6th, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    JT – I think the Maori teams goes a long way back
    and was a natural happening – long before all the
    sensitivities about race. It’s a cultural thing, not
    seen as racial.
    They are welcome to play in all countries bar the RSA.

  27. avatar DavidS says:
    December 6th, 2013 at 9:16 pm


    New Zealand is not a racist society.

  28. avatar Boertjie says:
    December 6th, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    In the presentation of SARU’s transformation implementation plan, Marvin Green, the General Manager: Development at SARU, said the demographic representation of SARU players at junior level (Under-11 to Under-19) showed far greater ‘black’ representation.

    Of the 332 689 players, 188 411 were blacks and 144 278 were white, according to Green’s presentation. Green also noted that at school level there was (in May last year) 57 percent black to 43 percent white representation.

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