South Africa Broadcasting Cooperation acting Chief Operations Officer (COO), Hlaudi Motsoeneng, says the broadcaster pulled the Metro FM talk show on the "Road to Mangaung" off air last night because it did not meet the corporation's editorial policy code of balance and fairness.
Motsoeneng made the remarks during a media briefing at Auckland Park on the SABC's
decision to stop the radio station's panel discussion with newspaper
journalists on the media coverage of the ANC elective congress.
According to reports the journalists were denied the right to go on air by a
mysterious caller who canned their scheduled interview on Metro FM's
"Talk with Sakina".
However in a media statement, the SABC claims that there was
no mysterious caller, but rather an editorial decision was taken to
cancel the interview.
He says going ahead with the discussion would have
transgressed the SABC's Editorial Codes. "The discussion was about the
ANC. Our view is simple; you need the ANC to be part of that
discussion. We are not banning anyone as people say. We are only saying
we should be fair to all citizens of this country and we stick by that
In agreement with Motsoeneng SABC Group Executive of Radio, Leslie Ntloko, agrees with
Motsoeneng. "According to the SABC editorial policy, which is guided by
the broadcasting act, when an event of national importance is of a party
political nature, editorial staff must ensure that SABC policies of
objectivity, accuracy, fairness, impartiality and balance are adhered
to. So our decision was made in view of the fact that these were not
followed," says Ntloko.