‘Demon spirits’ of apartheid linger in Paarl – former Bok coach De Villiers

Peter de Villiers coached the Springbok team for four years between 2008 and 2011. Picture: Getty Images

‘Most schools for children of colour in Paarl have no sports facilities at all because the town prioritises luxurious lifestyles for whites,’ De Villiers said.

Former Springbok coach Peter de Villiers lashed out in a statement on Thursday, insisting not enough was being done to develop schools and sport facilities in underprivileged communities in the Western Cape.

De Villiers claimed the local municipality had “robbed” Paarl residents by making various controversial decisions.

“It (the municipality) has again shown its contempt for people of colour by granting permission for a stormwater drain to be dug across a school playground,” De Villiers, who coached the national rugby team between 2008 and 2011, said in a social media post.

“The stormwater drain will service a new suburb and shopping centre,” he said.

In a scathing post, De Villiers alleged that Noordepaarl (Noorder Paarl) High School
had repeatedly been “in the firing line” in an ongoing battle to keep its doors open, with local government concentrating on the development of more privileged areas.

RACISM WON'T GO AWAY IN PAARLAfter the DA-led municipality failed to implement its plan to rob the Paarl community of…

Posted by Peter De Villiers on Thursday, 13 August 2020

Earlier this year, after receiving the latest report from the Eminent Persons Group on Transformation, Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa admitted there was not enough being done to develop school sport in underprivileged areas.

“Less than 10 percent of the 25 000 schools participate in sport, and the minister has emphasised that this needs major improvement,” the department of sport, arts and culture said in a statement at the time.

De Villiers hit out at the lack of progress, claiming there had been little effort to develop disadvantaged schools since the “demon spirits” that forced evictions under apartheid rule.

“The school (Noorder Paarl) has just one sports field,” De Villiers said.

“This is a relative luxury. Most schools for children of colour in Paarl have no sports facilities at all because the town prioritises luxurious lifestyles for whites.”

He called for an end to what he claimed was systematic racism, in order to drive development and transformation.

“We have had more than enough of these racist attitudes,” De Villiers said.

“Black lives matter – also in Paarl.”

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