AmaZulu head coach Craig Rosslee has encouraged other South African men not to take the law into their own hands and to report domestic violence to the authorities.
Rosslee, a former Orlando Pirates assistant coach, was speaking after he this week hauled his wife before a domestic-violence court and obtained an order to stop her from harassing him.
He agreed to be identified because he wanted to share his experience with other men who might be going through the same thing.
Speaking through his lawyer, Claire Waldeck, Rosslee said he was a law-abiding citizen and followed all the legal processes available to him to deal with the matter.
“We are glad that the two were able to reach a settlement,” said Waldeck.
In the Randburg Magistrates’ Court on Monday, Rosslee accused his wife of “verbally and emotionally abusing” him.
He asked the court to order her to stop phoning him, sending him SMSes or leaving abusive messages.
He also asked that she be ordered not to “threaten him or verbally abuse him in front of the children”.
In court papers, Rosslee spoke of his fear of losing his job.
“I am fearful that (my wife) may act on her threats and approach the media and my employer, and my job will be on the line,” he said.
“I am also terrified that police will arrive at my workplace to arrest me.”
Central to the couple’s battle is an outstanding bill of nearly R20 000 for fees at a top Johannesburg private school, which their eldest child attends.
In court papers, Rosslee alleged that his wife sent him a threatening SMS on April 23 “insinuating that I am not a man and I don’t want the best for my children”.
Five days later, she allegedly left him a “threatening voice message, saying that she will be taking steps I will not like and there will be consequences”.
“In April, (my wife) threatened to phone my employer to expose me for failing to take care of my children. My employers are concerned about the impact of these threats and the future of my employment contract,” he wrote in his affidavit.
He also claims that each time he phones his children to wish them good night, his wife refuses to allow them to speak to him and verbally abuses him “while they are standing next to her”.
At court on Monday, the couple completely avoided each other. The coach, dressed smartly in a brown suit, a matching brown shirt and brown scarf, was flanked by three lawyers. His wife arrived alone, dressed in blue jeans and a bright-blue jersey.
She declined to comment.
“I prefer not to discuss this matter with the media at this stage. I just want this matter to be resolved amicably,” she said.
In a settlement, which was made an order of court, she agreed not to “emotionally or verbally abuse (her husband) in any way whatsoever”.
She was also required to immediately withdraw the unspecified criminal case she laid against him. The agreement also stipulates that she must “inform the children that Rosslee has paid whatever he was required to pay in relation to the school fees and she will make every reasonable effort to portray (him) in a positive light”.
She has also agreed not to “contact or threaten to contact (the coach’s) employers, nor will she make or threaten to make any disparaging remarks in relation to (him) on any social network”.
Rosslee agreed to settle the school-fee bill and pay his wife a further R7 650 by close of business on Monday.
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