South African FA backs president Danny Jordaan over rape claim
The South African Football Association (Safa) has come out in support of its president Danny Jordaan over a charge of rape made against him.
Singer and ex-MP Jennifer Ferguson accused Jordaan in October last year of raping her in 1994.
On Saturday she decided to lay charges against him with the police, who are now obliged to investigate the matter.
Jordaan has said he will defend himself in court and has always denied the allegations against him.
Thursday's statement from Safa is its first public backing of Jordaan since the news of the accusations were first made public.
"Ms. Jennifer Ferguson has only now referred her complaint to a forum that can deal with the matter in terms of the laws of country and our constitution," a Safa statement read.
"We further note the worrying tendency of a trial by the media outside of our established legal structures, created to deal with matters of this nature and the rights of Women in general who have been abused.
"In this regard, we point out that every person, with no exception, is presumed innocent until proven guilty by the courts of law.
"We note, very importantly the complainant's recent version, which is significantly different from her 2017 October/November narrative.
"In the circumstances, the Safa NEC (National Executive Committee) is of the firm belief that this matter should be heard in an appropriate legal forum where the matter can be aired on a fair and objective basis."
The case has been transferred from police in Johannesburg to their colleagues in Port Elizabeth, where the alleged incident took place in 1994.
Ferguson, who is now based in Sweden, is currently in her homeland as she prepares to perform in Cape Town in April.