Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Justice Alliance of South Africa wants court to review the decision to allow On Digital Media (ODM) and StarSat to broadcast pornography.

The Justice Alliance of South Africa (JASA) on Friday filed court papers in the Western Cape High Court to get On Digital Media (ODM) running the TopTV, now rebranded to StarSat, South African satellite pay-TV operator to stop broadcasting its bouquet of pornographic sex channels in the country.

JASA is bringing the application against ODM, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), the minister of communications and ODM's business rescue practitioner, Peter van den Steen.

JASA wants the court to review Icasa's decision to grant ODM a license to broadcast sex channels in South Africa from 20:00 until 05:00. JASA says Icasa is required in terms of Section 192 of the Constitution to regulate broadcasting in the public interest and to ensure fairness and a diversity of views broadly representing South African society.

JASA says that the so-called "watershed period" during which Icasa allowed ODM to broadcast pornography on TopTV or now StarSat - from 20:00 to 05:00 - doesn't guarantee that children will not be exposed.

"JASA submits that pornographic channels, such as those which ODM applied to broadcast, are extremely unsuitable for children." According to JASA the average bedtime for children aged about 16 is 22:30.

"Significant percentages of children between the ages of 10and 19 watch television after 20:00. It would appear that in allowing the broadcasting of the pornographic channels from 20:00, Icasa did not have regard to the large percentages of children who watch television after 20:00, and who are awake until about 22:30."