Racism 'rampant' within NRL administration

Rugby league's top administrators have been accused of racism after the chairman of the game's Indigenous Council was sacked last week.

News Ltd is reporting chairman Percy Knight received a one-paragraph termination letter from Australia Rugby League Commission chairman John Grant last Friday, informing him that he had lost the faith of fellow members on the Indigenous Council.

Knight has indicated racism was behind his dismissal.

"There is rampant racism within the NRL's administration and it is very toxic," he said.

Former player Larry Corowa, considered one of the best indigenous players to play the game, has backed Knight's claim with a vicious attack at the league's top officials.

"Chris, how do you live with yourself in the knowledge that you played a prominent and key role in our demise from ARLIC?," Corowa wrote in a letter to ARLC commissioner Chris Sarra.

"Is this the Aboriginal way or the Coconut way?"

The word 'coconut' is a derogatory term used to describe an Indigenous person who is black on the outside but white on the inside.

In an interview with News Ltd, Corowa demanded Sarra be sacked.

"Yes, he should resign immediately. The community had a meeting two weeks ago in Sydney and people voted no confidence in him as a commissioner.

"They don't want him representing Aboriginal people in rugby league."

Corowa continued: "The council is there to tick the boxes for white fellas, for the NRL and John Grant.

"The first council meeting I went to, there were more white fellas than black people and it's meant to be an indigenous body.

"The Australian government wants to close the gap on indigenous rights. The ARL Commission is widening the gap with the way we are treated.

"(Percy's) been knifed in the back. How can you have two meetings and want to get rid of him because he wants to engage the community and ensure we have a voice in the running of the game?

"We are sick of the control from the white people in the game. Aboriginal people do have brains and we can manage our own programs."

Sarra insisted Knights's dismissal was due to the lack of faith shown in him by fellow members of the Council.

The timing of Corowa's attack could not be any worse for the game, with the annual Indigenous All Stars v NRL All Stars clash to be played this weekend.