In February, Phakaaathi got information from a reliable source that Paintsil was shown the door at Maritzburg due to misconduct.
After receiving a complaint from his lawyer, Phakaaathi offered Paintsil a right of reply to the report.
His reply is as follows:
“Mr Paintsil has taken note of the false and defamatory allegations contained in the article published by The Citizen/Phakaaathi on 8 February 2016, in which it was alleged that he was released from his contract with Maritzburg United due to misconduct. It was further alleged that Mr Paintsil was known to have organised parties for players of Maritzburg United and that he was to some extent involved in events preceding the tragic death of Mondli Cele.
“Mr Paintsil strongly denies all of the aforesaid allegations contained in the article published by The Citizen/Phakaaathi.
“Brian Zuma, the spokesman for Maritzburg United, immediately responded to these allegations labelling them “malicious, disgusting and devoid of all truth…” Mr Zuma further stated that Mr Paintsil is a “true professional who led by example” and that releasing him from his contract “was a technical decision”.
“It is unfortunate that The Citizen/Phakaaathi continued to publish these false and defamatory allegations, which subsequently received widespread republication in media throughout the world, despite both the club and Mr Paintsil releasing statements to the media disputing the allegations. As a result Mr Paintsil has instructed his legal representatives to take steps against The Citizen/Phakaaathi with a view to possible defamation proceedings being commenced.”