SACP to march on the SABC to protest against corporate capture

By Tiso Black Star Group DIGITAL

The South African Communist Party’s (SACP) leadership on Sunday said that the party’s planned march to the SABC’s offices will soon be reactivated.

This to fight corporate capture and campaign for the proper treatment of workers‚ the party’s provincial secretary Jacob Mamabolo said.

The party in Gauteng had applied for permits to march on the premises of the SABC and Media24‚ owned by Naspers‚ in Auckland Park‚ Johannesburg. It had also planned to include Multichoice in Randburg‚ Johannesburg on its route‚ but the march was suspended.

“In actual fact we will be talking to Cosatu … to march to the SABC because the issue of corporate capture by Naspers and MultiChoice and the overall transformation of the SABC‚ its treatment of workers is still a matter that we want to raise.

“The march to the SABC will happen. The date we will announce‚” Mamabolo said.

Earlier on Sunday‚ the SACP called on SABC bosses to reverse their draconian editorial policy‚ to refrain from changing policies without proper public consultation given that the SABC was a public broadcaster‚ and to respect workers’ rights.

In a statement‚ the SACP said the news this week that SABC economics editor‚ Thandeka Gqubule‚ Radio Sonder Grense executive producer Foeta Krige and senior journalist Suna Venter had been suspended for disagreeing with an instruction during a diary meeting not to cover a campaign protest against censorship at the public broadcaster was “shocking to say the least”.

The suspensions follow a decision taken within the SABC‚ announced in May‚ that the broadcaster would no longer cover violent protests in its news reporting.

“The suspensions clearly expose the draconian character of the internal censorship that has been imposed at the SABC and manipulation of news from within. Since the banning decree was announced‚ it has become very difficult to trust the SABC as a source of uncensored news.

“Each time news is broadcast an unanswered question what was concealed re-surfaces. This is very bad for the image and credibility of the SABC‚” the SACP said.

“The SABC must broadcast news without fear or favour. This includes both good and bad news‚” the party added.

It said the SACP and indeed many law abiding South Africans had always condemned the destruction of public property‚ and even taken action against such criminality.

“It can only be intellectual bankruptcy to suggest that South Africans are a homogeneous mind that takes its cue from wrongdoing when it is broadcast on television. The SABC in fact reserves the right to condemn such wrongdoing in its news coverage and educational programmes‚” the SACP added.