Mr Gay World Responds to Louw Breytenbach Case Dismissal


Louw Breytenbach was crowned Mr Gay World in October 2021 but resigned amidst a bitter dispute

Mr Gay World is deliberating whether to resume legal action against former titleholder Louw Breytenbach after its defamation case was dismissed on procedural grounds by the Pretoria High Court.

The litigation arose from statements made by Breytenbach and his publicist, Gavin Prins, in a December 2021 press release and other media platforms.

After resigning from Mr Gay World, Breytenbach accused the organisers of trying to get him to sign what he described as an “unconstitutional and opaque” contract.

The Gay World Foundation (NPC) and Gay World Events (Pty) Ltd, along with their directors, accused Breytenbach of making “several false and defamatory statements” and initiated an interdict and defamation suit against Breytenbach and Prins, seeking a public apology, retraction, and damages.

On Friday 12 April, the court dismissed the case over how it had been brought to the court by the organisations but failed to rule on whether or not Breytenbach was guilty of defamation.

Response from Gay World

In a statement, Gay World Foundation (NPC) and Gay World Events (Pty) Ltd acknowledged the dismissal on procedural grounds but emphasised that the court refrained “from ruling on the substantive merits of the defamation application”.

Mr Gay World referenced paragraph 6 of the judgment in which Acting High Court Judge Mervyn Rip stated that while not making a determination on the issue, the statements made by Breytenbach as outlined in the notice of motion “do appear to be prima facie defamatory of the Applicants…”

Said Mr Gay World’s John O’Neil: “Gay World Foundation (NPC) and Gay World Events (Pty) Ltd maintain that the disputed statements made by Breytenbach and Prins were false and defamatory, and it’s evident that the court did not find otherwise.”

He suggested that the matter may not be at an end, adding, “We are currently reviewing the judgment with our legal team to deliberate on any potential further action, including a separate action for damages.”

In an earlier statement, Breytenbach expressed being “beyond thrilled” with the dismissal, while Prins defended their right to free expression, insisting “that everything we have said in the media is of public interest.”

Mr Gay World 2024 is set to take place in Great Britain for the first time from 21st to 26 August, hosted at the famous Alnwick Castle in Northumberland.

Get the Mamba Newsletter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend