After the shocking allegations earlier this week that Springbok player Elton Jantjies was having an affair with the team’s dietician, Zeenat Simjee has broken her silence.
It was reported by Rapport that the Springbok flyhalf was seen entertaining Simjee at two different guest houses in Mbombela during the week leading up to the Springboks’ test match against New Zealand in Mbombela at the beginning of August.
It was further reported that Jantjies was not staying in the same accommodation as the rest of his teammates. People at the guest house spotted Jantjies with a mystery woman, not his wife, and they believed it was Simjee.
The dietician has denied these claims. She released a statement on Friday that was published on IOL demanding an apology and said the allegations made in media reports were “damaging baseless hearsay”.
She pleaded to the Rapport to retract and apologise. In the statement, she explains she was in Mbombela dealing with a family matter, so the claims she was with Jantjies during that period is “devoid of any truth”.
Simjee further stated that allegations have tarnished her character.
Read the full statement below:
I am the subject of some extremely negative media reports over the last week, tarnishing me personally and degrading my dignity.
I appreciate the support of my fellow Springbok management team members who concurred with my choice to return home to work through this with the support of my family and relevant professionals.
I chose to maintain a dignified silence while the media storm was raging, as I am severely traumatised by what has transpired.
Let me unequivocally state that I am shocked at the level of sensational journalism from the newspaper that first published the article. I am devastated by the fact that a journalist and his newspaper could publish such damaging allegations on false and baseless hearsay. It is disappointing.
As a young professional, I hold my profession in high regard. In the same light, it is an honour and privilege to represent my country and be part of the Springbok Team. As a person of values, I will not bring about disrepute to myself, my family, my profession and all the many incredible people that have been kind, positive and supportive towards me throughout this ordeal.
The weekend ahead of the test week in Mbombela, I had been with my parents dealing with family bereavement. So, the allegations of me spending time with Elton Jantjies at a guesthouse is devoid of any truth.
This has cast an extremely negative aspersion and disgraceful perspective on my character to which other media houses have also added their perspective. I appeal to the original publisher to retract and apologise for the negative sentiment cast on me.
I am committed to the Springbok Team and would like to expediently get this behind me so I can continue with my professional responsibilities to the Springbok team.
Compiled by Sandisiwe Mbhele