17 October 2017

South Africa: Power FM Defamation Case - Questions Were 'Tainted With Accusation'

Power FM presenter Thabiso Mosia's interview with Stadium Management South Africa CEO Jacques Grobbelaar was tainted with accusation, papers filed in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg have revealed.

Stadium Management and Grobbelaar are suing the Power FM host for defamation after he interviewed Grobbelaar about the death of two people at FNB Stadium during the Carling Black Label Cup between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs in July.

His lawyer, Bertie Grobbelaar, filed the summons on September 29.

The lawyer said that letters had been sent to Mosia beforehand, but that they were ignored.

When asked about the matter, Power FM Sports Editor Thabiso Tema did not wish to comment.

"We will allow the lawyers to handle the matter, but from our side there is nothing more that we can add," he said.

Straight answers

Stadium Management is demanding R1m in damages for defamation, while Grobbelaar is claiming R250 000 for defamation and an additional R250 000 for injury to his dignity.

It was alleged in court papers that Mosia portrayed a determination to trap Grobbelaar during the interview, as if to indicate evasiveness and deceit on his part.

According to the papers, Mosia accused Grobbelaar or Stadium Management of not taking, or avoiding, responsibility for the incident.

Grobbelaar was also accused of not giving straight answers to questions put to him.

Mosia claimed that security personnel working at FNB Stadium had been "taken off the street" at the time and that an undisclosed source had told him that the turnstiles at the stadium did not work, the papers stated.

The parties claim that Mosia was not given an opportunity to respond to questions and that Mosia's "utterances" were false.

"The utterance in question carried the innuendo that Stadium Management has a chief executive officer who cannot be trusted and Grobbelaar is prepared to resort to lying in order to avoid responsibility and accountability."

Source: News24

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