EFF congratulates SABC for impressive audience growth, becoming the leading news broadcaster in SA
8 May 2020
The EFF congratulates the public broadcaster, SABC news for regaining its audience leadership status. According to the recent Broadcast Research Council data, the SABC has improved its market share performance to 42% and 40% in the national, DTT and DSTV news markets. This means SABC has more audiences than the reactionary, white monopoly capitalist controlled ENCA.
Over a year ago, the EFF called on South Africans to believe in the public broadcaster. We called on society to move from watching ENCA to SABC. Over five months ago, we further called on a complete boycott of ENCA for its fascist tendencies.
When the ENCA withdrew from broadcasting the EFF 2nd National People's Assembly, it was a perfect sign of their fascism. News organizations never banned apartheid despite its evils, because the duty of journalism is never about cutting coverage. Under no circumstances do you treat newsworthy issues as doing them a favour for giving them coverage. ENCA has a joumalistic duty to cover our conference despite ideological differences. However, they decided to cut it because they are bias, fascist and driven by white monopoly capitalist interests.
We, therefore, celebrate that the public broadcaster, which is accountable to a democratic parliament, has now removed ENCA from the number one audience spot. It will always be problematic for a democratic society to be dominated by privately owned news cables.
Because no one holds ENCA accountable except its private owners like the Ruperts. This is why it openly becomes partisan, including campaigning for Pravin Gordhan and Ramaphosa. Had such occurred at SABC, because it belongs to the people, it would have been held accountable.
We congratulate the SABC and call on its newsrooms to remain independent, fearless and imperial. We also celebrate SABC's decidedly pan-Africanist approach; because South Africa's public imagination has to be re-integrated into the continent. South Africa must think of itself as African and all newsrooms have a key role to play in that.
We also know that these audience numbers have improved despite turbulent financial times at the SABC. The national treasury has often shown no confidence in the ability of the public broadcaster to rise to glory. Thus, they have constantly refused with full bailouts.
However, the SABC is on the rise. We believe that over and above, this success will begin to show even in its online platforms. Thus, ICASA must urgently amend its regulations to allow SABC to launch its online programs without any hinderance and directly contest the ShowMax and Netflix markets. We have no doubt that SABC will do far much better than all these programs combined. No one will ever outdo the SABC with local content, particularly if the historic record of the SABC is taken into account.
Once more, we reiterate our call for the complete isolation of ENCA until it falls like ANN7.
Issued by Vuyani Pambo, National Spokesperson, EFF, 9 May 2020