EFF threatens court action over SABC’s ‘complete ban’

2014-03-19 11:28

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The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has accused the SABC of banning EFF coverage ahead of the May 7 general elections.

“As things stand, the SABC has completely banned the EFF and has also issued an official communication that the EFF will not be represented in any of the weekly elections debates,” party spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said today.

“The SABC television division is being manipulated by puppets of certain political parties to completely ban anything that has to do with the EFF on television.”

The EFF would write to the Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa), Communications Minister Yunus Carrim and the board of the SABC to demand the immediate unbanning.

“If Icasa, the communications minister, and the SABC board do not lift the television broadcasts ban on the EFF, we will approach courts to compel them to do so ...”

Ndlozi claimed SABC staff were prevented from covering the EFF’s March 17 press conference to announce its election lists.

“We have it on good authority that the SABC crew that was supposed to cover the press conference was physically prevented from using the SABC cameras,” said Ndlozi.

The following day, EFF leader Julius Malema did a prerecorded interview with the broadcaster’s 24-hour channel for a show called Question Time, anchored by Mpho Tsedu, but the interview was not aired.

Later, Malema allegedly received a message which read: “Afternoon Julius. Thank you for making time this morning to talk to me on Question Time. The interview was scheduled to go on air today at 5.30pm as I had mentioned to you. However, that won’t be the case. I want to apologise for the inconvenience I have caused as a result of this ‘no-show’ today. Mpho.”

Ndlozi said this was a clear message that broadcasts related to the party were banned.

SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago dismissed the allegation.

“You know that cannot be true. You have seen them on our platforms. We are used to this at election time,” he said.

“Everyone wants maximum attention. All the political parties complain because they want attention from us. We will continue to do our work as we do.”

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