Former Idols SA judge and Cliff Central founder Gareth Cliff has slammed a “sensational” and “misleading” headline that said he had admitted to giving his former colleague Mara Louw a “spiked” drink.
Cliff trended on Twitter on the weekend after the Sunday Times reported Cliff admitted in his book that he gave Louw the drink that led to her much-publicised behaviour on the show. As a result, her contract was never renewed.
Watch the video posted on YouTube by redcementroom below:
Cliff said the reporting was “fallacious” and that the matter was “in the hands of my legal team”, further urging fans to read the “actual” story of what exactly happened in his new book.
“I’m used to newspapers getting it wrong, twisting a line out of context, concocting a provocative headline to sell enough of their papers to stave off the inevitable decline of profitable print media. But this was outrageous.
“That headline made it sound like I was admitting to a crime. The article itself was full of factual inaccuracies that the Sunday Times have since admitted to,” he said.
“Misinterpreted? Either I said it or I didn’t. I didn’t, so there’s no interpretation necessary. What the Sunday Times unleashed was a tirade of hysterical accusations and insults on social media that had me branded everything from a Bill Cosby-type date-rapist to a white man who cost a black woman her job.
“It was all based on absolute nonsense, so all of it was totally unjustified. I don’t mind taking responsibility for things that I HAVE done or things that I HAVE said, but this was made up. I’ve never spiked anyone’s drink, let alone a colleague twice my age.”
“Our lawyers have asked for an unreserved apology and the Sunday Times are dragging their feet.”
Read the full statement below: