Sanef condemns attack on Daily Sun journalist by church members

2016-04-14 21:24


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Pretoria – The South African National Editor’s Forum (Sanef) on Thursday condemned the brutal attack on Daily Sun photojournalist, Samson Ratswana, by alleged members of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church (IPHC) in Soshanguve.

The attack took place on Wednesday night when Ratswana went to the church after responding to a call that a fight was taking place.

When he arrived at the scene, a group of about 70 people attacked him reportedly shouting, “journalist, journalist”.

“Attempts by two Metro Police officers to rescue him failed as they were overpowered by the group,” Sanef said in a statement.

The group assaulted Ratswana for nearly half an hour before he was eventually saved by the arrival of a VIP protection unit officer.

Sanef said they were thankful for the police who tried to help the journalist.

Public intereset

“Sanef notes the apology of one church elder and executive committee vice-chairman, Mr Abie Wessie, but that is not enough.”

The church was asked to identify the culprits and hand them to the police if it genuinely wished to distance itself from the unacceptable and criminal behaviour of the group.

“Journalists have a responsibility to reflect to society all the good that churches do. Equally, when there are ructions within the church, as is the case presently in the IPHC, it is the responsibility of journalists to reflect this to society," Sanef said.

"Just as church members welcome the coverage of their pilgrimages to Zuurbekom, similarly they should accept that the realities of conflict within their church will be covered as a matter of public interest.”

Read more on:    sanef  |  media  |  crime

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