No media hostility in Nkandlagate - researcher

2014-01-22 05:30
Nkandla (Cornél van Heerden, Beeld)

Nkandla (Cornél van Heerden, Beeld)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - There is no evidence of media hostility towards the ANC in reporting on security upgrades to President Jacob Zuma's homestead at Nkandla, in KwaZulu-Natal, a researcher said on Tuesday.

"The questions relating to the alleged hostility of the news media towards the ANC, their lack of respect for the dignity of public figures, and their not acting in the interests of the public were found to be unfounded in this coverage," said Professor Jeanne Prinsloo.

"The analysis of the editorials in particular, but also the reporting in general, shows that the investigation takes a position of moral indignation both at the expenditure on the... homestead and at the cavalier way that information was obscured."

Prinsloo is the author of the Media Policy and Democracy Project's (MPDP) critical textual analysis of press coverage of the R206m upgrades.

The MPDP is a collaborative research initiative between the University of SA's department of communication and science and Rhodes University's school of journalism and media studies.

Prinsloo analysed the City Press and Mail & Guardian's coverage of what she called "Nkandlagate".

The study was focused on investigative journalism and not routine reporting.

She said her study covered a calendar year from September 2012, and made reference to 84 of the 300 news articles and editorials sampled online.

Prinsloo said that while the two newspapers had been highly critical, they had not attacked the ANC, the office of the president or that of public officials. Rather, they were critical of particular forms of conduct.

"To argue that the media have attacked the dignity of the ANC politicians involved would require that the politicians have been wrongfully accused, or that the journalist made ad hominem attacks."

Prinsloo said the ANC's public officials felt no obligation to provide access to the information about public spending that was requested, and Zuma at no stage saw it fit to address the issue or reassure the public.

Zuma supports

Zuma's defence remained one of ignorance, as did that of several other ANC politicians.

"The impatience with requests for information on the part of these ANC officials, their reluctance to provide information and a frequently hectoring tone, point to their attitude toward the news media and indirectly to the public," she said.

"President Zuma's supporters similarly responded aggressively, at times resorting to accusations of racism."

There was a dismissive attitude on the part of the ANC's public officials, who on several occasions guaranteed the media and public access to the public works report on the upgrades and then denied this access.

Their conduct was disrespectful, not only to journalists but to the public as well, Prinsloo found.

She said it was ironic that the ANC had endorsed the Nkandla expenditure when, in its 2010 document entitled "Media Transformation ownership and diversity", it had lamented the role the media played in encouraging greed.

Prinsloo quoted from the document: "Our souls are being poisoned by the spirit of conspicuous consumption in a socio-economic formation that encourages greed".

She said it was important to point out that the research did not represent a whitewash of the news media.

- SAPA
Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  pietermaritzburg  |  nkandla upgrade  |  media
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
52 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland
The craziest deaths of 2014
How to make this a sensual, sexy summer!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

HOUSES FOR SALE IN Hermanus

Houses R 2 680 000

HOUSES FOR SALE IN Paarl

Houses R 2 690 000

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy 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

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is so much going on around you and inside your head. You may want to take your ideas to the next level. Romance may be...read more

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

Hello 

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 24.com network.

Settings

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.