‘DANNY SAVED SEX PEST’

Soc­cer boss ‘halted probe into of­fi­cial’

Sunday Times - - FRONT PAGE - By KHANYI NDABENI

‘Safa boss kept red card in his pocket’

As soc­cer boss Danny Jor­daan main­tains his si­lence fol­low­ing claims by singer Jen­nifer Fer­gu­son that he raped her, new al­le­ga­tions have sur­faced that he failed to act against a sex-pest em­ployee.

The se­nior South African Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion of­fi­cial at the cen­tre of the scandal — whose name is known to the Sun­day Times — was ac­cused of sex­u­ally propo­si­tion­ing a 22-year-old male in­tern on two oc­ca­sions in 2014. He was also ac­cused of rap­ing a male caterer at a Safa Christ­mas party in 2015.

And while Safa this week claimed ac­tion had been taken, it re­fused to give fur­ther de­tails.

A source close to the 2014 in­ci­dent claimed this week that Jor­daan, pres­i­dent of Safa, had halted a dis­ci­plinary hear­ing against the of­fi­cial, telling the as­so­ci­a­tion’s le­gal team the in­ci­dents had not hap­pened on Safa premises and they there­fore had no case to pur­sue.

While the se­nior man­ager told the Sun­day Times this week the al­le­ga­tions were an at­tempt to smear him ahead of Safa elec­tions next year, the for­mer in­tern said he had been trau­ma­tised and was dis­ap­pointed at how the or­gan­i­sa­tion had han­dled his case.

“This guy first promised to take me un­der his wing and groom me in the in­dus­try. [But] he did not want any­thing to do with me the mo­ment I de­clined to par­tic­i­pate in his sex­ual needs,” the for­mer in­tern said.

“The first time it hap­pened we were sleep­ing over at his house in Jo­han­nes­burg south. We had to be at Safa House by 7am and it was go­ing to be dif­fi­cult for me to be there on time us­ing pub­lic trans­porta­tion.

“He of­fered me a room but . . . dur­ing the night, I woke up and he was play­ing with him­self, he asked me to as­sist him. I told him I’m not that type of a guy but he car­ried on. The fol­low­ing day, I sent him mes­sages telling him not to ever do that again in front of me.”

The in­tern said the of­fi­cial propo­si­tioned him again dur­ing a Safa ref­eree work­shop at a ho­tel at OR Tambo In­ter­na­tional Air­port.

“This time when I re­fused his of­fer he threat­ened to kick me out of his depart­ment. His treat­ment of me changed so much that I wanted to quit. I told my mother and she es­ca­lated the mat­ter to Jor­daan.

“Safa gave me four ses­sions with the psy­chol­o­gist, the hear­ing was post­poned many times un­til I left them four months later. To this day no one from Safa has given me any feed­back on the mat­ter,” he said.

In De­cem­ber 2015, a crim­i­nal case was opened against the Safa of­fi­cial af­ter he al­legedly forced him­self on a male caterer at Safa’s Christ­mas party at Fun Valley out­side Jo­han­nes­burg.

The Sun­day Times has seen an e-mail sent to Safa at the time by the ca­ter­ing com­pany, Se­ba­batso Ca­ter­ing and Hir­ing Ser­vices, de­tail­ing the rape al­le­ga­tion and re­quest­ing a meet­ing with CEO Den­nis Mum­ble.

“As they fin­ished with the dec­o­ra­tions very late at night it was de­cided that the em­ploy­ees will sleep over and Safa will make sleep­ing ar­range­ments for the two em­ploy­ees,” the e-mail read.

“[The fol­low­ing day] one of the em­ploy­ees com­plained to the com­pany MD that as they slept . . . [the man­ager] raped him and also sex­u­ally ha­rassed [the other ca­ter­ing em­ployee] as they were shar­ing a room with him.”

It said the two men had opened a case with po­lice.

The se­nior man­ager told the Sun­day Times the al­le­ga­tions were po­lit­i­cal as “Safa is ap­proach­ing the 2018 elec­tions”. He said Safa had in­ves­ti­gated the claims by the in­tern and he had been found not guilty.

“There is noth­ing wrong with mas­tur­ba­tion. If I had forced him to help me then it would have been an­other story.”

He said the NPA had de­clined to pros­e­cute him on the 2015 rape charge. “I was a vic­tim. The [ca­ter­ing em­ployee] is the one who wanted to sleep with me but there was no sex­ual in­ter­course be­tween the two of us. In­stead the morn­ing af­ter, both boys made break­fast and we sat to­gether and ate. No one com­plained about any­thing.”

He said he and Jor­daan were “close” but de­nied the Safa pres­i­dent had ever pro­tected him. At­tempts to reach Jor­daan were not suc­cess­ful and he did not re­spond to text mes­sages.

Safa spokesman Do­minic Chimhavi said staff mat­ters were han­dled by Mum­ble. He said Safa had acted on both cases, but did not elab­o­rate.

NPA spokes­woman Phindi Louw said there had been no pros­e­cu­tion in the rape case as there were dis­crep­an­cies be­tween the ver­sions of the vic­tim and the wit­ness and there was “no prospect of a suc­cess­ful pros­e­cu­tion”.

There is noth­ing wrong with mas­tur­ba­tion. If I had forced him to help me then it would have been an­other story Se­nior Safa of­fi­cial

Pic­ture: Fredlin Adri­aan

Danny Jor­daan is said to have swept sex­ual ha­rass­ment al­le­ga­tions against a Safa of­fi­cial un­der the car­pet.

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