School grounds soccer row

AfriForum has laid a charge of trespassing against the mayor of Mafube municipality after he held a soccer tournament on the local high school's sports ground without permission.

AfriForum has laid a charge of trespassing against the mayor of Mafube municipality after he held a soccer tournament on the local high school's sports ground without permission.

The civil rights initiative's chief executive, Kallie Kriel, said yesterday that a case was opened on behalf of the school governing body of Wilgerivier High School at Frankfort, Free State, against ANC MP Butana Komphela and Mafube mayor Louis Ntombela.

"We laid the charges at Mafube police station just after the incident on Saturday," Kriel said.

He said a charge of malicious damage to property was also laid against an official of the municipality, Ernest Nxayi, after he cut open the padlocked gate of the sports grounds on Saturday morning.

The gates were opened so that a soccer match organised by Ntombela could proceed on the grounds.

Kriel said Ntombela, Komphela and about 200 other ANC supporters accessed the school's premises illegally for the soccer match.

The school's governing body was allegedly not against leasing the sports ground but wanted Ntombela to first pay an outstanding fee for a soccer match played in October last year. Ntombela apparently refused.

Kriel said he had no choice but to lay charges after he warned the men on behalf of the school governing body that they were violating the law.

"It is shocking for Komphela as an MP, as well as for the mayor, to show such blatant disregard for the rule of law," Kriel said.

He hoped the complaints against Komphela and Ntombela would prove that they were not above the law but had to "comply with legislation just like the rest of us".

Kriel accused Ntombela of abusing his position and advancing his personal objectives.

Ntombela denied the allegations, saying his interests were with the community. -Sapa

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