SANEF applauds the courage and commitment to ethical journalism displayed by the so-called SABC8 journalists
14 December 2016
In their testimony before the parliamentary ad hoc committee that has been set up to investigate unethical conduct and governance failure at the SABC, four of the SABC8 journalists described the reckless reign of impunity and culture of fear, interference and censorship at the public broadcaster.
Economics editor Thandeka Gqubule, SAFM Current Affairs Executive Producer Krivani Pillay, parliamentary journalist Lukhanyo Calata and Former Contributing Editor Vuyo Mvoko represented the 8 SABC journalists who blew the whistle earlier this year on unacceptable editorial practices at the broadcaster.
While the inquiry continues through December and January, proceedings thus far have shocked the nation and brought shame on the public broadcaster. Not only has editorial independence been trampled on, but so has the Broadcasting Act and the Constitution.
We are deeply concerned about the allegations that the SABC paid for the establishment of ANN7 and funded The New Age's promotional events.
These serious allegations suggest that fraud may have been committed and so we call on Parliament to instruct the police to institute a full investigation into the disclosures and allegations.
SANEF condemns the harassment, and even death threats against the SABC 8, and other witnesses at the inquiry. The chair, Vincent Smith, described these acts of intimidation as an assault on parliament, and we support his call for the police and other agencies to investigate and ensure the safety of the SABC 8 and other witnesses to the inquiry.
SANEF also appeals to the ad hoc committee to do whatever it takes to keep the SABC operational and restore its credibility and good governance with the addition of the word also after Sanef.
Issued by Sam Mkokeli, SANEF Media Freedome Sub-Committee Chairperson, 14 December 2016