Media Monitoring Africa slams closed SABC hearings

Another outstanding issue is the death of former SABC 8 journalist Suna Venter after threats to her life, MMA director William Bird says.

The behind-closed-doors South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) hearings on political interference in editorial matters were “worrying” and left the public “not the wiser”, Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) director William Bird says.

The probe headed by veteran journalist Joe Thloloe was launched last month by former acting group CEO Nomsa Philiso.

Since the appointment of its new board and executive management, the SABC has been reviewing policies governing editorial‚ programming‚ local content‚ language‚ religion‚ and universal service.

Bird added that he was enraged at the ban on opening the hearings to public scrutiny.

“Instead of all the goings-on being heard, we are left not the wiser, picking up scraps when the ANC goes public after making a submission. When the ruling party makes a submission, we need to know exactly what they say.”

He added: “Here we are also dealing with the sad aftermath of the SABC 8 which left journalist Suna Venter dead due to stress arising from threats to her life. We are still looking for answers as no one has been arrested.”

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