Zapiro 'disappointed' by SABC

2009-05-27 14:26
Cape Town - Cartoonist Zapiro (Jonathan Shapiro) has slammed the SABC for delaying the broadcast of a documentary on political satire, due to be broadcast on Special Assignment, for the second time.

"What more can one say? The SABC has been a constant disappointment and I naively imagined the show was going to air," he told News24.

The documentary centred on Zapiro's cartoon of President Jacob Zuma attempting to rape "Lady Justice".

SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said in a statement issued about an hour before the documentary was due to be aired that “ owing to the fact that due process with regards to consultation has not been concluded” it would not be shown.

"Just imagine how the committed journalists who work at the SABC feel who are constantly beaten down - and the public. They've had months of consultation and yet we're still in the dark," said Zapiro.

Damaged credibility

Zapiro believes that the problems at the SABC stem from fear of legal challenges.

"Their notion about damage to the SABC is completely the wrong way round. They're worried about potential lawsuits - but they've done enormous damage to their credibility."

He said that his legal wrangle with Zuma is a worrying sign.

"I'm being sued by the president and it's disturbing - it doesn't give a good signal to the world. It could happen that he would have to come to court and testify against me.

"But I'm not worried about either court case because I'm sure that freedom of expression would trump any argument."

Zapiro is also concerned about statements made by the ANC leadership, including ANC Youth League leader, Julius Malema.

"Julius Malema has said some bizarre things and if his views represent the top ANC leadership, then we're in trouble.

Fears of president-for-life

"But what I'm more concerned about is pre-publication censorship and interdicts against newspapers.

"I think there's confusion at the SABC and a power struggle. There are a number of top people who suck up to the notion of what the government would want them to do.

"I haven't seen evidence of orders from (ANC headquarters) Luthuli House, but I feel there're a number of people who don't know what their function is."

Zapiro said that while the situation is far better than during apartheid, when newspapers were banned and he was watched, the signs are "worrying". He's concerned that SA will become an African state with a president-for-life.

"There are people in government and many ANC supporters who push the 'big man syndrome'. I'm accosted on talk shows by people who don't know my history in opposing apartheid."

"I don't feel that I've changed, the direction of the ANC has changed."

Read more on:    sabc  |  jonathan shapiro  |  jacob zuma  |  documentary  |  special assignment  |  censorship  |  cartoon  |  zapiro

Read News24’s Comments Policy


Inside News24


BMW drift battle: M235i vs. speedway bike

Watch this insane drift contest with four-times dirt-track World champion Karl Maier riding a speedway bike against a BMW M235i.

Want to start talking dirty?
Everyday struggles of naturally skinny guys
And this year's Miss Bumbum title goes to...
How to maintain your mo, bro

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now! - shop online today

20% off ALL TV Series

Choose from 1000’s of the hottest TV Series . While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


There is a strong focus on social interaction and connecting with your friends. You may have the need to expand and connect with more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.