SABC fined R25 000

2013-04-08 15:54

The SABC has been fined R25 000 by the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of SA.

The commission said today this stemmed from a rebroadcast of a 2009 episode of the Speak Out programme on November 8 last year.

Community Dialogue of SA (Codisa) brought the complaint against the public broadcaster.

The programme had exposed alleged fraud at Codisa and indicated Codisa had been deregistered as a non-profit organisation by the social development department.

The programme was then rebroadcast, even though the SABC failed to contact Codisa for an update.

The SABC said it was exercising its duty of informing the public about matters of importance, with Codisa given the opportunity to clarify any misconceptions contained in the programme.

Apart from the fine, the SABC had to allow Codisa an opportunity to reply on a Speak Out episode for eight of the first 10 minutes regarding its current situation.

The reply should take place before May 15 or a later date agreed to by Codisa and the SABC.

The commission also ordered that specific phrasing be used by Speak Out when Codisa exercised their right of reply, indicating the programme had made a mistake.

“Failing to check whether circumstances had changed amounts to gross negligence, especially in the light of the considerable time lapse between broadcasts,” the commission judgment stated.

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