SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux is reportedly set to finally vacate his post by the end of the year after beginning his notice period. At the start of this year, SA Rugby was already reviewing the future of its embattled CEO after he was ordered to pay back R37 million to Stellenbosch University for the misallocation of funds.
Juris Roux’s six-year legal battle with the university finally came to an end after he failed in his bid to overturn the guilty verdict in the case related to the misappropriation of millions of rand during his tenure in the finance department of Stellenbosch’s Maties between 2002 and 2010.
However, the ongoing saga has dragged on throughout the year, with questions remaining over Roux’s future, with his contract as CEO only coming to an end after next year’s World Cup in France.
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According to an article in Sunday newspaper Rapport, though, negotiations for his early departure are now well underway, and SA Rugby president Marx Alexander has apparently made it clear that Roux won’t be in his position by the time 2023 rolls around.
Interestingly, the publication also states that there is a clause in the contract of Rassie Erasmus that enables him to exit his contract if Roux isn’t the CEO anymore.
However, it’s believed that Erasmus remains fully committed to the Springboks, and to his his role as director of rugby, with any exit before the end of the 2023 World Cup highly unlikely.
In another article by Sport24, it’s reported that Roux’s termination notice agreement comes into effect from 1 October following a SA Rugby presidents meeting that took place on Thursday to discuss the exit plan. It’s believed the notice period will run until 31 December.
This decision comes after minister of sport Nathi Mthethwa reportedly applied political pressure, making it clear that Roux’s position was no longer tenable after the findings agains him.
It could bring an end to a seemingly never-ending case, although Roux’s severance package could apparently still run into the millions.
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Roux was found guilty of manipulating the electronic accounting system to channel millions of unbudgeted university funds to the rugby club.
Increasingly, despite the findings, it’s become clear that Roux does not intend to resign from his position.
However, the case has gone quiet at times, leaving many to question what action SA Rugby are taking. In March, they provided an update to the media, but it seemed that it simply remains an ongoing waiting game.
“Media are advised that a review of the outcome of the appeal into the arbitration hearing between Jurie Roux and his former employer, the University of Stellenbosch, remains ongoing.
“The legal process between Roux and the University of Stellenbosch continues following the filing of an application on 3 March in the Western Cape Division of the High Court for a review and setting aside of both the final arbitration award as well as the award of the Appeal Tribunal against him.
“Although SARU is not a party to the case, we understand the public interest in the matter considering Roux’s position as CEO of SARU.
“SARU has sought and received the input from an eminent legal team throughout this matter which is currently considering the recent developments. Key stakeholders of SARU are being kept informed of developments.”
A cloud has hung over Jurie Roux for over a year
SA Rugby also faced the Parliamentary Sports Portfolio Committee at the beginning of the year, and SA Rugby president Mark Alexander was put in line to answer more questions, and sought to explain why Roux had not been suspended.
“It must be remembered that this happened with his previous employer and not with SA Rugby,” Alexander said, as quoted by Media24.
“It is not a cut and dried matter like [if] he worked for SA Rugby, there are other options we had to take and we have to follow due processes.
“We’ll wait for our attorneys to come back to us and we’ll follow their advice, because it wouldn’t be a normal suspension.
“There have been similar instances elsewhere, but you can’t suspend a person for something that happened in a different organisation.
“There were no allegations when he was employed.”
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