Huisgenoot has published a follow-up article and front page story, with another man (Kobus*, 66) coming forward to say that he was molested by Solly Ozrovech when he was 12/13. Kobus did confront Solly about this 13 years ago, but Solly’s reply was yet again shameful. You can read more about this in my new post about this week’s Huisgenoot.
In the latest issue of Huisgenoot (20 February) we won’t know the two gentleman as Johan* and Kobus* anymore, but rather Naas van Zyl and Willy Harvie, as they have decided to come forward and show their faces to support their stories. You can read more, and see them, right here.
Straight into 2014, Huisgenoot has published a cover and story that will make massive waves all over South Africa, and it will be the talking point around many water coolers, for many more weeks…! They received claims from a gentleman saying that he was sodomised by Solly Ozrovech (popular Christian books author and pastor, 85) as a young boy while he was in an orphonage that Solly and his wife was part of…
I’ve already read claims on Social Media of Solly-fans standing behind him, and saying the claims are false and that they are dissapointed in Huisgenoot for a number of reasons (just read the thread of comments…). No one seems to have actually read the article (and the letters that were sent between them), because if they did, they would know that the person claiming this, didn’t run to Huisgenoot immediately, but that there’s a history to these claims…
Johan (false name, and now in his 60’s and living abroad) contacted Solly in September 2013 directly via e-mail after keeping it silent for so many years. When reading the thread of e-mails and correspondence in Huisgenoot, I could really feel Johan’s pain, and every person can read between the lines in Solly’s responses. There is no way that Huisgenoot would run with a story like this, without crossing all their t’s and dotting their i’s.
To me, this isn’t just a story that Huisgenoot is publishing to look for sensation or copy sales, but a story with a much bigger importance… if the claims are true, then it’s important to be known, and for all the possible victims to get the opportunity to get closure. You’ll notice at the end of the article that Huisgenoot has published an e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org (something the seldolmly do), and I think part of the reason is because they’re expecting others to also come forward after reading Johan’s letters and side of the story… And of course 100’s if not 1 000’s of letters of angry readers and Solly-fans…
This from the editor’s letter;
You can buy the digital version of this issue of Huisgenoot right here. (Images of article included for illustrative purposes, and small enough not to be able to read the article without buying it)
It seems like Rapport decided to wait until there was more ‘evidence’ and/or ‘claims’ against Solly Ozrovech, before they would publish anything. The reason why I say this, is because the Sunday after the 1st Huisgenoot cover story appeared, there was no mention at all in the newspaper about the claims.
Only after the 2nd issue of Huisgenoot appeared, did they do a story about it. They did an exclusive interview with one of Solly’s sons, and I must say it’s also quite a sad and emotional read, as you just once again realize how many people are affected by such claims (true or false). You can read the full Rapport interview and article with his son Francois Ozrovech right here. In the article he also refers to Huisgenoot (Solly is apparently not allowed to ever talk to Huisgenoot again)…
“Sestig jaar lank bly hierdie beweerders doodstil. Om my pa nóú – onder skuilname – na sy graf te jaag? En hulle probeer om hom só, in ’n týdskrif, aan die kaak stel?
“Huisgenoot en YOU het as’t ware my ouers voorgelê en oorrompel, sonder enige respek vir hul bejaardheid.
In ’n oënskynlike hinderlaag op ’n Vrydagmiddag vier-uur is twee mense van onderskeidelik 82 en 87, wat ooglopend nie meer gesond is of vlug van geheue nie, gekonfronteer met aantygings van kriminele gedrag.
“Dit terwyl nóg die klaers nóg my pa bewyse van skuld of onskuld kan aanvoer.
“My ouers was so naïef, hulle’t gedink Huisgenoot gaan die storie los nadat hy gesê het hy’s onskuldig. My geskokte pa het nie heeltemal besef wat aan die gang is nie.
“Toe ek die tydskrif in my hand hou, was dit onwerklik, asof hulle van iemand praat wat ons glad nie ken nie. Een van die kleinkinders het dit gelees en opgestaan en gesê: ‘Nee wat, dis nie my oupa van wie hulle hier praat nie.’
Rapport also spoke to Kobus* who was the 2nd person to talk to Huisgenoot about these claims against Solly. You can read his Rapport interview and article right here, where he talks more about the negative criticism they’ve received (by reading comments), and also how he’s willing to ‘show his face’ if Solly is willing to apologize.
- Issue: 23 January 2014
- On the cover: Solly Ozrovech
- Price: R19
- Twitter: @Huisgenoot