Jonathan Agnew and Michael Vaughan made to pay £40 by "corrupt" South African policeman
Jonathan Agnew and Michael Vaughan, both ex-cricketers and currently commentators for BBC were made to “empty their pockets” by a South African policeman. This was a result of Agnew not being able to produce his driving license.
While Agnew was on the drivers seat, Vaughan, Henry Blofeld and Simon Mann were the other passengers present. The incident took place after the first day of the fourth Test match between England and South Africa. Agnew and company were returning from Centurion and were on their way to a hotel in Johannesburg.
According to Agnew, his car was pulled over by a “corrupt” policeman on Friday evening. The former England skipper, Michael Vaughan said that they were compelled to pay £40 between themselves as a bribe for the policeman. South Africa is well known for its notorious corrupt policemen and reports of similar events keep making the news.
It has also been reported that the group of cricketers were willing to pay the fine and had no wish to go forward with the bribe. Vaughan posted a picture on Instagram of Agnew and the officer outside the car. The picture shows the officer writing out a ticket.
A photo posted by Michael vaughan (@mvaughan40) on Jan 22, 2016 at 9:05am PST
We also got to learn that the officer was an “angry man,” and according to Vaughan, he also had his handcuffs out at one point and would have arrested Agnew.
The former England fast bowler Agnew, nicknamed Aggers, made it clear that he was not at all willing to pay the bribe.
"He made us empty our pockets and took the cash. Please do not suggest I bribed him,” Aggers tweeted. Here are some of his other tweets.
Wasn't carrying my driving licence https://t.co/NaGTW70OTf— Jonathan Agnew (@Aggerscricket) January 22, 2016
And he's a cricket lover. Asked who was winning as he trousered the cash.— Jonathan Agnew (@Aggerscricket) January 22, 2016
Vaughan was speaking on BBC Five Live’s Test Match Special on Saturday where he said the incident was quite intimidating for all of them.
“He said: ‘Right, empty your pockets, give me your money, what have you got?’ We were all emptying our pockets. I had to give him an English tenner. It was dangerous territory for us all,” said Vaughan.
“He was an angry man – he didn’t like me at all. At one brief moment I thought Mr Agnew was going to be spending the night behind bars. We might have had to start the Free Jonathan Agnew campaign. It was a hairy moment.
“The best bit about it is that once he’d said, ‘Empty your pockets’, the officer then said, ‘How’s the cricket going then? Who’s winning? Did South Africa have the better day?’ I said: 'We’re off. I’m not hanging around.'”
Edna Mamonyane, Johannesburg Metro Police department spokesman is of the opinion that the victims need to approach the police and only then can they take the required action against the said police officer.
After having described corruption among traffic policemen in South Africa as “endemic and systemic,” David Lewis of Corruption Watch said, “There’s no such thing as an on the spot fine,” he said. “You have got to issue a ticket and if that is not paid within a number of days, a summons to court. It’s good that, unlike most people, they’ve gone public about it. It would be even better if they lodged a complaint. This is embarrassing for South Africa.”
While a BBC spokeswoman explained, “We can confirm that Jonathan Agnew was stopped by the police. He was not carrying his driving licence and paid a fine. We have nothing more to add."