The ANC Youth League says Saru can “replace the entire Springbok team with schoolboys from Langa”.
What started out as a peaceful picket against the lack of transformation in the sport outside the South African Rugby Union offices in Plattekloof yesterday, turned into a maul when protesters managed to evade security guards and invaded Tygerberg Park.
As about 200 protesters sang and danced their way up the road, cops responded by shooting a stun grenade into the crowd.
And as the yellow-clad crowd ran for cover, someone shouted: “They want to kill us for white [people]!”
The ANCYL launched its #EndRacism Campaign earlier this year, and they want Saru to make an effort at transforming the sport, starting at ground level.
National Secretary General, Njabulo Nzuza, says he is tired of seeing children in the townships, who deserve equal opportunities, ignored because of where their demographics.
“There are very talented players across our townships. In Langa alone, those boys dedicate time and effort and you can see the talent. The scouts for provincial and the Springboks will never see these boys because they are not in the right school.
“Nobody goes to Langa and nobody invests in these boys, who have the drive and talent to represent our country.”
Nzuza says he doesn’t care what happens to the current Springboks, as long as more blacks are represented.
“You can replace the entire Springbok team with boys from Langa. Our black players are neglected, cast-offs and only ever seen when they go to white schools. This is going to stop. We are here to tell Saru: stop with your white supremacy and investing in all those white schools. You will transform or you will go extinct,” says Nzuza.
The ANCYL was supported by legendary lock Aslam Toefy, and Trafalgar High School principal Nadeem Hendricks.
Toefy tells the Daily Voice: “We want transformation and we are tired of waiting for them to tell us on their terms. The time for white apartheid supremacy and that old Stellenbosch mafia gedagtes is over.”
Three Saru executive committee members – Khaya Mayedwa, Toby Titus and Francois Davids – received the memorandum.
Mayedwa told the protestors: “We will definitely look at this thing [memo] and engage on what the way forward will be.”
But Nzuza took exception to their memo being referred to as a “thing” and shouted: “No respect, they have no respect for our outcry. We will go and take this ‘thing’ to the stadiums and then see what importance it will gain.”
Calls for transformation in rugby started in last year when former Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer was slammed for only having two black players in his starting line-up.
Two weeks ago, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula dropped a bombshell when he banned unions from bidding for international rugby and cricket events due to a lack of transformation.