SABC to appeal M&G ruling again

2011-06-09 19:12
Johannesburg - The SABC will make a third attempt at challenging a ruling that it broadcast an apology to the Mail & Guardian and reporter Sam Sole, it said on Thursday.

The Broadcasting Complaints Commission of SA (BCCSA) had ordered that the SABC broadcast a summary of its judgment against the SABC on the 19:00 news after it broadcast an item that suggested that Sole had accepted bribes from British businessman John Sterenborg in return for publishing damaging allegations of corruption against businessman Robert Gumede.

The BCCSA found that the allegations made by Gumede against Sole were serious and damaging and that he was not given a chance to defend himself.

SABC3 and radio station SAfm were ordered to broadcast an apology. The broadcaster had intentionally or negligently distorted the facts, the BCCSA found.

However, the state broadcaster lost an application for leave to appeal, and tried again by filing an application for leave to appeal with the deputy chairperson of the BCCSA, Professor Henning Viljoen.

This was dismissed.

Their broadcast of the BCCSA's judgment was to have been on June 7.

The SABC said it intended having its appeal heard at the Independent Communications Authority of SA's compliance and complaints committee and also wants the judgment suspended pending this review. "Provision for such a review is made in the Icasa Regulations," said SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago.

The chairperson of the BCCSA extended the implementation of the judgment to June 14, Kganyago said.

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