The SABC's Afrikaans weekday soap 7de Laan on SABC2 has been slammed again for its depiction of violence during family viewing time and insufficient warning to viewers, with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) that fined the SABC R15 000 for the transgression of the broadcasting code.
The SABC must pay the R15 000 fine before the end of May with the BCCSA that slammed the public broadcaster after it said that "the broadcasting code has yet again been breached by 7de Laan".
It's the third incident in recent years of the BCCSA chastising the Danie Odendaal Productions soap for violence, and for the SABC failing to adequately warn viewers on SABC2 over violent content before the so-called "watershed" time period when children are still watching and part of the audience.
On 24 March SABC2 broadcast the 7de Laan episode in which the character of Willem was shown to strangle the character of Gita in a violent scene.
The SABC initially told the BCCSA that it had an audio advisory at the beginning and had a "13V" advisory.
Yet, after viewing the episode, the BCCSA found that the "13V" is not on the screen during the strangulation scene complained of, but is only visible in the non-violent scene screened after an interval".
"If the audio advisory was accompanied by a verbal warning of the violent scenes about to be screened, this would have assisted the broadcaster," said the BCCSA.
"Only after the 7de Laan scene complained of, the 13PG advisory is visible. Thereafter a commercial break followed the scene complained of, and at 18:40 the 13V was only visible long after the scene complained of, was screened," the BCCSA said.
The BCCSA found that the SABC didn't screen the "13V" in compliance with the code.
The BCCSA said it warned 7de Laan and the SABC after similar violent scenes in 2009, in 2012 and again in 2015 that the visual advisory of 13PG V was unrealistic and insufficient.
"By now, in 2016, it is not unreasonable or inequitable to expect a standard of conduct from the broadcaster ... in line with the code to protect children that are in its audience when screening violent scenes on 7de Laan," the BCCSA said.
The SABC told the BCCSA that "SABC2 would like to reaffirm its commitment to the protection of our young audiences and has already begun serious and costly interventions following an earlier similar judgment on 7de Laan".
The SABC said "an extensive workshop will be held with the drama department as well as the production house. All written scripts will be re-evaluated to ensure that there are no further grossly violent scenes. The Gita story is coming to an end as the actress is also leaving the show."