City Press must take action against Piet Rampedi - ANCYL

League says ombudsman's ruling is an indictment of the paper


24 January 2011

The ANC Youth League notes the Press Ombudsman's report on the City Press' reports between February and September 2010, which linked ANC Youth League President Julius Malema to corruption and delivery of shoddy services in Limpopo Province. The City Press, particularly its lousy, obsessed Journalist Piet Rampedi continued to allege that President Julius Malema was involved in the building of collapsing bridges in Limpopo and linked him to corrupt activities, despite the clarification provided by the Public Protector and all the people involved.

The City Press further created a wrong impression that Limpopo government is corrupt and singled out by National government because of being corrupt.

In the complaint lodged by the Premier of Limpopo, and in response to the pictures published by the City Press claiming that ANC Youth League President constructed collapsing bridges the Press Ombudsman came to the following conclusion, "From the pictures available to this office it is clear that the one used on the front page was taken from such an angle that it gives the impression that the bridge was damaged - when in fact it was not the bridge, but indeed the side of the road that was affected. This is in breach of Art. 5.3 of the Press Code that states: "Pictures shall not misrepresent or mislead..." and on the claim that the bridges were washed away, the Press Ombudsman discovered that "It could not be established that "bridges" were washed away. This is inaccurate and misleading reporting and in breach of Art. 1.1 of the Press Code".

Overall, the Press Ombudsman came to the judgment that the City Press newspaper "is reprimanded for:

  • using a front page picture to portray a misleading message; and
  • Inaccurate reporting that bridges were washed away".

Whilst noting the findings by the Press Ombudsman and the reprimand of the City Press, the ANC Youth League is strongly convinced that the Newspaper should take action on the lousy Journalist Piet Rampedi, whom we said time and again, even to the City Press Editor, was involved in witch-hunting. Piet Rampedi concocted stories to defame the President of the ANC Youth League and leadership of the ANC and government of Limpopo in a manner which is evidently unethical, immoral and leaves a lot to be desired.

The ANC Youth League's call for a Media Tribunal is strengthened by the findings of the Press Ombudsman because an apology is not adequate to correct the damage that was deliberately created by the City Press and its vindictive lousy Journalists. The ANC Youth League also calls for the withdrawal of the Print News Journalist of the year award given to Piet Rampedi by Vodacom, because what he was awarded for are pure distortions of reality and complete lies meant at defaming the leadership of the ANC YL and the ANC in its entirety. The Public Protector and now the Press Ombudsman have demonstrated to South Africa to see that the City Press is not an honourable Newspaper, but a platform to defame leaders of the ANC for reasons beyond our comprehension.

Statement issued by Floyd Shivambu, ANC Youth League Spokesperson, January 23 2011

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