Simon Zebo has called for a Pro D2 player to be banned from rugby for life for a racist comment he made during a match.
The individual in question, who has not been named, plays for Provence in the French second division and told Nevers’ Christian Ambadiang “I will burn you, banana eater” during a Pro D2 game on Friday night.
Ireland and Munster full back Simon Zebo has called for strong action to be taken against the player that made the racist comment, saying that he deserves “no less” than a life ban.
“Life ban for that scumbag. No more, no less,” Zebo tweeted.
— Simon Zebo (@SimonZebo) September 5, 2021
Christian Amadiang: ‘We need to do better.’
Amadiang posted a message on his Instagram account after the game and called for officials to take a harsher stance against racism in rugby.
“‘I will burn you, banana eater.’ These were the words that were expressed to me by a player from Provence during last night’s game and for him to later tell me that it was in the heat of moment, which he seems to want to justify what he said, is utterly unacceptable and in bad taste,” Amadiang wrote.
“It is crazy to think that in the rugby community such racist incidents should be swept under the carpet and condoned in private. I know that there are people that have experienced blatant racism and that are afraid to stand up for themselves publicly only to protect those people’s reputation privately.
“That is in fact to the detriment of the person experiencing this blatant racism because they are not given a platform or the support to express themselves when their character or entire being is being ridiculed. Worst part is that the people (the referees) that are supposed to be on the look out for such behaviour tend to turn a blind eye to it.
“It’s so funny that we are taught to be the better person and walk away and to disregard what the person said but sometimes it’s really so difficult because how do you really protect yourself from the act of racism. We really need to do better than to overlook these issues because it can have a psychological impact on those people.
“I’m not a big social media personality but I hope that it gets to the right people and that something needs to be done about it. We as players in the broader rugby community should endeavour to stand up for ourselves or for other whenever we experience such racist behaviour. We need to do better.”
View this post on Instagram
Provence Rugby statement.
Provence released a statement yesterday confirming that one of their players had made a racist comment during their Pro D2 game against Nevers, and apologised to Amadiang on behalf of the club.
The club did not name the player in question but said that “serious sanctions” would be brought against him.
“Provence Rugby learned yesterday that Christian Ambadiang, player from Nevers, was the victim of racist insults by one of our players,” the statement reads.
“Despite the latter’s apologies, and his irreproachable behaviour since his arrival at the club, this is unacceptable. This indeed undermines the club’s project, which has made societal issues one of its reasons for existing.
“Provence Rugby would like to apologise to Christian Ambadiang and, more generally, to all those who may be shocked by the situation. We are too.
“The management of the club will now meet with his player and put in place sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the facts.”