Sanef condemns manhandling of reporters

2013-05-23 07:40

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Johannesburg - Reports that a home affairs official allegedly manhandled reporters outside a Cape Town police station was met with outrage by the SA National Editors' Forum (Sanef) on Wednesday.

Sanef said in a statement that Cape Argus photojournalist David Ritchie and reporter Yolisa Tswanya were covering a story about the arrest and detention of immigrants at the police station when they were accosted by the official.

"According to Cape Argus executive editor Gasant Abarder, the officer pulled Ritchie from outside the police station, grabbed his camera and proceeded to delete the images - without identifying himself."

A police officer, who witnessed the incident, apparently ordered Ritchie off the police premises.

The newspaper's legal team were investigating the matter, with a view to instituting civil and or criminal cases against the official.

Sanef said it supported this action.

"Sanef is also concerned that it appears that wayward officials have taken to deleting images.

"Why would government officials go through the trouble of manhandling journalists and delete their pictures if they [officials] knew that they had not broken the law and thus had nothing to hide?"

Sanef said the deletion of images was illegal and should not be tolerated in a democracy.

Read more on:    sanef  |  cape town  |  media

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