Tiger Tiger applies for licence renewal

JOHN HARVEY

Tiger Tiger nightclub in Claremont has applied to have its extended liquor trading hours renewed.

Despite several objections lodged by nearby residents, who argue the establishment already gives rise to unacceptable noise levels, a request has been made to the City that it also be allowed to sell alcohol between the hours of 2am and 4am – a status the club has had since 2014.

The application states Tiger Tiger has traded strictly in terms of existing liquor licence conditions and hours. Tiger Tiger management say the business forms an integral part of the Main Road entertainment precinct, where competing businesses already trade until 4am.

The application by Tiger Tiger holding company Star Dance Entertainment includes documents disputing statements made by law enforcement services assistant chief Nathan Ladegourdie that there had been “numerous” incidents involving club patrons that had appeared in the media.

Club attorney Allan Saunders argued that to the best of Tiger Tiger management’s knowledge, the incident which appeared in the media related to three men from East London – Mitchell Turner, 20, Chad de Matos, 19, and Aaron Mack, 20 – who were accused of assaulting cleaner Delia Adonis, 52, at the club in October 2014. However, the charges were later withdrawn.

“The comments by Mr Ladegourdie appear biased and misinformed, and should, with respect, be ignored,” Mr Saunders said in his submission.

The application is also supported by a statement from twins Andile and Ayanda Ngidi, who recently bought into the club as part owners, which was circulated on social media on February 3 this year.

In a detailed introduction explaining their intentions for the club, the Ngidis wrote: “Here is a fact that will surprise you. Tiger Tiger has never had a violent incident occur at the nightclub in the 10 years that it has traded. We are not talking about an odd altercation which inevitably happens at all nightclubs. We are referring to any incidence of violence serious enough to be reported in the press. The only incident which occurred inside the club was a drunk patron who urinated off the balcony onto a taxi driver. Whether this was a racist incident or not, it is not for us to determine, but it was painted this way in the press. This of course was a patron, not a member of staff, so accusations of the club being racist are unfair. We used our CCTV footage to identify the man and he was later charged.”

Former model and UCT student Djavan Arrigone was found guilty of assault in December as a result of the incident.

The brothers also claim that no assault charges have ever been laid against nightclub security or that a complaint of racism has ever been laid at the club.

“Except for the urinating patron, all the instances that occurred and have caused the damage to our reputation have been well away from the club, either in the parking garages or on their way home, making it difficult to prevent,” the brothers said.

Two cases involving patrons being viciously assaulted after leaving the club made headlines last year.

In October, Sanet de Lange, 18, got into a metered taxi in which a scuffle between the driver and his friend broke out.

After she jumped out in Rondebosch, the men ran after her before pinning her down and kicking and hitting her.

Only a month later, Carl Ronald Schoombie was fatally beaten by two men after leaving the club in an Uber taxi.

The City is weighing up several objections from Claremont residents to the application.

In an email dated March 16 2016, Candice Vietri wrote: “My apartment faces Tiger Tiger and the noise levels and people leaving the club and screaming in the streets has affected me for years. Being able to sell alcohol till 4am will only make matters worse. I would strongly object.”

Apartment block owner MA Jeeva also objected on the grounds that many of his tenants were students who needed quiet in order to study late at night.