The ANC Youth League has decided not to disrupt Springbok Test matches – for now.
In a joint statement yesterday, ANCYL and SA Rugby said they had had “positive engagements” over the burning issue of transformation in rugby.
Youth League Secretary General Njabulo Nzuza said that although rugby still had much work to do, his organisation had been reassured of SA Rugby’s intentions and commitment following a presentation to the League by SA Rugby.
Last month, about 200 ANCYL members picketed outside Saru’s offices at Tygerberg Park in Plattekloof, and threatened to “disrupt” matches during the incoming Ieland tour this month.
At the time, Nzuza, said: “You can replace the entire Springbok team with boys from Gugulethu. 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.”
Yesterday, he said SA Rugby has proven to them that it was serious about transformation.
“We have further noted that the current Springbok squad is the most transformed in history and Teboho Mohoje has been named as captain of the South Africa ‘A’ team this week.
“SA Rugby demonstrated where progress has been made and on that basis we are happy to throw our full weight behind the Springboks and put off our plans to disrupt matches.
“We have provided SA Rugby with recommendations on Youth engagement and will continue this conversation with SA Rugby.”
Khaya Mayedwa, Senior Manager Government and Stakeholder Relations at SA Rugby, added: “We had the opportunity to explain just how far SA Rugby has come in recent years and discuss the details of our Strategic Transformation Plan, which is a road map for the sport at all levels to 2019. We believe that SA Rugby has a good story to tell and we welcomed the engagement with the ANCYL to bring them up to speed with our progress.”