Editors' Forum condemns attack on journalists

By Drum Digital
11 March 2015

The SA National Editors' Forum (Sanef) has condemned the mugging of three SABC journalists in Johannesburg.

"Every South African lives with the reality of crime, but to see thugs brazenly ignoring television cameras and robbing media workers in the course of their work yet again brings home the level of criminality in our society," said Sanef treasurer Angela Quintal in a statement on Wednesday.

The journalists were mugged on Tuesday night outside the Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg.

SABC contributing editor Vuyo Mvoko, foreign editor Sophie Mokoena, and journalist Chriselda Lewis were preparing for a live crossing on Tuesday night after covering the arrival of Zambian President Edgar Lungu at the hospital.

Video footage showing two men accosting Mvoko as he waits to deliver his report in front of the camera went viral on YouTube with fellow journalists sharing screen grabs in the hopes that the muggers would be caught.

Mvoko said later in an SABC interview that one of the men threatened him with a gun when he did not immediately give up his cellphone.

"Sanef appeals to members of the public who recognise the men to do the right thing and alert the police to their identities and whereabouts so that the law can take its course," Quintal said.

Gauteng police said no arrest had been made by Wednesday morning.

The armed robbers accosted the crew and robbed them of their valuables, including laptops and cellphones, outside the hospital.

The robbery was recorded on camera and no physical injuries were reported," said Colonel Noxolo Kweza.

She said minutes after the robbery the crew spotted and approached a police officer who was driving past after attending a meeting.

"The member, a captain from Parkview police station, stopped to assist and ensure that the victims were safe.

"He drove around the area with one of the SABC staff members searching for the suspects, but to no avail."

She said a case of robbery and theft had been opened. Police had vowed to find and arrest the men.

Source : Sapa

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