[DEBATE] : SABC tells Icasa hearing there was no blacklisting
riaz.tayob at gmail.com
Thu Mar 12 15:48:37 GMT 2009
[if i recall even Vavi and other COSATU officials were allegedly
"black listed" ... and what a fine board the SABC has... billions in
the red and it is not a crisis... - koeldrink economics reigns...]
SABC tells Icasa hearing there was no blacklisting
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THE SABC denied allegations of blacklisting at the broadcaster in 2005
and 2006 at an Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa)
The denial is contrary to the findings of the Sisulu Commission of
Inquiry, which was appointed by the broadcaster to investigate claims
that certain commentators had been banned from SABC programmes by news
head Snuki Zikalala.
A complaint was laid by the Freedom of Expression Institute (FXI) with
Icasa's complaints and compliance committee in February 2007 when the
SABC apparently failed to act on the commission's findings. In
November last year the committee ruled that the FXI should submit
supplementary evidence in support of its complaint and that it could
not rely on the Sisulu report.
Advocate Wim Trengove, acting for the FXI, argued that the SABC's
supplementary affidavit, provided by Fakir Hassen, the broadcaster's
complaints officer, was inadmissible as it was based on hearsay
The SABC also denied that a statement issued on June 20 2006 on the
blacklisting was false. The statement denied there had ever been a
"blanket ban" on certain commentators, an argument which Ishmael
Semenya, counsel for the broadcaster, repeated yesterday.
But Trengove said "the evidence shows there was a blanket ban on
several people. There wasn't a discussion document. There were just ad
hoc, arbitrary bannings by the head of news."
No affidavit had been received from Zikalala. Two inferences could be
drawn from this, according to Trengove: either Zikalala did not deny
the accusations against him or the SABC and its legal counsel did not
feel the denials would stand up to cross-examination.
Semenya did not address these aspects of Trengove's argument, but said
that Icasa should confine itself to considering the final product of
the SABC — ie, the programming — rather than the management decisions
at the institution.
Judgment was reserved.
Meanwhile, Sapa reports that about 30 people working for the SABC's
marketing and sales divisions staged a sit-in outside the acting CEO's
Workers demanded that certain managers be removed over allegations of
nepotism, favouritism and wasteful expenditure, Communications
Workers' Union spokesman Karthi Pillay said.
The public broadcaster's spokesman, Kaizer Kganyago, denied knowledge
of the sit-in.
newmarchj at bdfm.co.za
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