Saturday, July 9, 2016

Prominent foundations slam SABC over news censorship; pleads with president Jacob Zuma to start a Judicial Commission of Inquiry into troubled SABC.

Prominent foundations representing Oliver Thambo, the Tutus, Thabo Mbeki Albert Luthuli and others are slamming the crisis-riddled SABC for its "troubling" SABC News censorship policy instituted by its controversial boss Hlaudi Motsoeneng and are pleading with president Jacob Zuma to urgently start a Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the SABC.

The Foundations Initiaive (TFI) that represents Oliver and Adelaide Tambo, Desmond and Leah Tutu, Chief Albert Luthuli and Thabo Mbeki in a strongly-worded open letter slammed the famously matricless Hlaudi Motsoeneng, the SABC board, and the minister of communications, Faith Muthambi, and the is now calling on president Jacob Zuma to have the beleaguered SABC investigated as a matter of urgency.

"Elements within the SABC have established a deeply troubling practice of flouting corporate governance principles, disregarding labour legislation and honouring the Broadcasting Act, the Constitution of South Africa and the SABC charter more in the breach than in their observance".

"We note with deep concern that the Public Protector and the courts have made adverse findings against the SABC's chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng, which communications minister Faith Muthambi and the SABC board have ignored".

The Foundations Initiative says Hlaudi Motsoeneng's "arbitrary decision to censor the broadcast of violent protests in the country takes the breach to new levels and offends against the Constitution, the Broadcasting Act, the SABC charter and basic democratic ethos".

"By censoring some news while privileging others, the SABC is stifling open debate and the free flow of information and ideas. This threatens the very essence of our democracy," warns The Foundations Initiative.

The Foundations Initiative (TFI) says "president Jacob Zuma should immediately constitute a Judicial Commission of Inquiry to review and make recommendations concerning the SABC corporate governance systems, operations, adherence or otherwise to the Constitution, the Broadcasting Act, the SABC charter and all relevant labour legislation".