The SACP pledges solidarity with suspended SABC workers and welcomes the Competition Appeal Court judgement in the case against the extension of MultiChoice's control over the SABC, our public broadcaster!
The South African Communist Party (SABC) is calling on SABC bosses to reverse their draconian editorial policy, to refrain from changing policies without proper public consultation given that the SABC is a public broadcaster, and to respect workers' rights!
The news this week that SABC economics editor, Thandeka Gqubule, Radio Sonder Grense executive producer Foeta Krige and senior journalist Suna Venter have been suspended for disagreeing with an instruction during a diary meeting not to cover a campaign protest against censorship at the public broadcaster is shocking to say the least. The suspensions follow a decision taken within the SABC, announced in May, that the broadcaster will no longer cover footages of violent protests in its news reporting.
The suspensions clearly expose the draconian character of the internal censorship that has been imposed at the SABC and manipulation of news from within. Since the banning decree was announced, it has become very difficult to trust the SABC as a source of uncensored news. Each time news is broadcast an unanswered question what was concealed re-surfaces. This is very bad for the image and credibility of the SABC.
The SABC must broadcast news without fear or favour. This includes both good and bad news.
The SACP and indeed many law abiding South Africans have always condemned the destruction of public property, and even taken action against such criminality. It can only be intellectual bankruptcy to suggest that South Africans are a homogeneous mind that takes its cue from wrongdoing when it is broadcast on television. The SABC in fact reserves the right to condemn such wrongdoing in its news coverage and educational programmes.