Irvin Khoza apologises over 'k- word'

Kamogelo Seekoei

Kamogelo Seekoei

Orlando Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza has apologised to the public for his use of the word "kaffir" on a black journalist last month.

Khoza said he decided to do so after seeing footage on the University of Free State's racist video on television.

He issued a statement after a closed meeting attended by Human Rights Commission (HRC) chairman Jody Kollapen, its chief executive advocate Tseliso Thipanyane and commissioner Zonke Majodina.

On February 18 Khoza used the word at a press briefing in Johannesburg after an article on the power struggle in the 2010 Soccer World Cup local organising committee (LOC) appeared in the press.

Khoza is chairman of the LOC. He told the press conference later that he told the journalist: "Stop thinking like a kaffir because you are contriving and misleading about something that is not there."

The HRC gave him a week to apologise for using the word or he would be taken to the Equality Court.

During the meeting with the HRC, Khoza said: "I humbly submit to all South Africans that at no stage did I intend to open the wounds and hurt our people suffered from racism.

" It was never my intention to use the 'k-word' to demean or impair anyone's dignity but to shock a brother to his senses. The revelation of the racist video in Bloemfontein has led me to view my use of the 'k-word' in a different light."

Khoza said he did not want to present an opportunity to those whose intention was to perpetuate racism.

"I therefore unreservedly and without qualification repeat my apology for using the 'k-word'," said Khoza.

His spokesman, Dominic Ntsele, said Khoza's apology yesterday was his second.