TopTV has a right to broadcast porn: Advocate

By Drum Digital
15 March 2013

The Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa) has heard that it has "no choice" but to allow TopTV three porn channels, it was reported on Friday.

Arguing for TopTV at public hearings at Icasa's office in Sandton on Thursday, advocate Steven Budlender said Icasa did not have the legal right to refuse the station permission to broadcast three subscription porn channels from abroad, Beeld reported.

"It does not matter what I, the Icasa council, any political party or any other organisation think about pornography on TopTV.

"Icasa, by law, does not have the power to refuse TopTV a licence,... in fact, it will actually be unconstitutional if consent is withheld."

Earlier this year, TopTV appointed a legal team known for defending speech and media freedom issues to fight its case.

TopTV is hoping to broadcast the channels Playboy, Desire and Private Spice between 8pm and 5am.

The initial application made provision for three 24-hour channels, but this plan was abandoned.

TopTV CEO Eddie Mbalo admitted that the channel hoped, amid its financial problems, to recruit more subscribers to boost the company's recovery.

Dr Albu van Eeden, of Doctors for Life, said pornography was "one of the most addictive habits" and that when a man watched porn, the brain secreted a substance similar to cocaine, LSD, and morphine.

-by Sapa

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