Sanef rejects tribunal proposals
Johannesburg - Sanef on Sunday expressed its "strong rejection" of renewed proposals for a state-appointed tribunal and a growing slate of new legislation that is "hostile" to the free flow of information to South Africans.
"Sanef points out that the proposed tribunal would go against the existing system of self-regulation which involves the media and members of the public, and would be unconstitutional," the SA National Editors' Forum (Sanef) said in a statement, following its annual general meeting in Johannesburg at the weekend.
The forum expressed its support for the Press Council Code of Conduct and encouraged editors to adopt a zero-tolerance approach to violations.
The tribunal concept was debated at the ruling ANC's Polokwane conference and would be tabled at the party's national general council in September.
Sanef resolved to work with other like-minded groups in a campaign for public support for media freedom.
It reaffirmed its commitment to the press council and press ombudsman system, "which deals effectively with public complaints".
The forum resolved to continue efforts to increase public knowledge of the system and to improve citizens' access to it.
Delivering his keynote address on Saturday night at the AGM, Justice and Constitutional Development Minister Jeff Radebe said the government would not undermine the constitution when it enacted laws.
"We will not enact any laws detrimental to your cause... I will ensure that any law that comes into being must be in conformity with our constitution."