Friday, July 4, 2014

BREAKING. 'Ignorant' matricless Hlaudi Motsoeneng at SABC is 'at odds with freedom of speech' - South African National Editors' Forum.

The South African National Editors' Forum (Sanef) is blasting the SABC and its famously matricless acting chief operating officer (COO) Hlaudi Motsoeneng, saying that Hlaudi Motsoeneng "reveals his ignorance about journalistic practice in a democracy".

The famously matricless and highly controversial Hlaudi Motsoeneng has not been suspended, nor fired after a scathing report from the Public Protector earlier this year implicating him in lying about his qualifications as well as maladiministration at the SABC and saying that "Hlaudi Motsoeneng should never have been appointed at the SABC".

Sanef, in a statement, is responding after Hlaudi Motsoeneng, speaking at Wits University in Johannesburg, called for South African journalists to be licenced so that those who act unprofessionally can be stripped of their licences.

"If you commit any mistake [as a journalist] they take your licence," the matricless Hlaudi Motsoeneng said.

"The SA National Editors' Forum condemns the proposal," says Sanef in the statement.

"It is unfortunate that the remarks come from a high-ranking official of the public broadcaster, one of the biggest media houses in the country. The proposal is at odds with freedom of speech which is enshrined in the Constitution."

"Hlaudi Motsoeneng has already demonstrated his ignorance of journalistic practice and principle by trying to prescribe to SABC journalists to broadcast 70 percent 'good news' about the government with 30 percent relegated for the so-called 'negative' news."

The SABC tells TV with Thinus that "the SABC can confirm that it has not taken a position which states that journalists be registered or licenced".

"In Hlaudi Motsoeneng's talk at the Joburg's Radio Days event held on Thursday 4 July, he made the remarks that journalists should perhaps like lawyers be registered and when they don't adhere to the ethics and principles of journalis, be deregistered for a lack of a better word," says Kaizer Kgangayo, SABC spokesperson.

"As you would know there is a debate happening within the country around the issue of media regulation, and this forum around media, radio specifically, was a platform where such debates can be discussed".

"The right to freedom of speech is enshrined in the constitution, and Hlaudi Motsoeneng has every right to voice his opinions," says Kaizer Kgangayo.

"Therefore Mr. Ferreira it must be made clear to you once again that the SABC has not taken a position the matter and encourages public debates around the issue".