OPEN LETTER TO MR STEVEN MOTALE - EDITOR OF CITIZEN NEWSPAPER

2015-08-17 09:31

OPEN LETTER TO MR STEVEN MOTALE - EDITOR OF CITIZEN NEWSPAPER

Greetings Mr MOTALE

In response to your open letter you written to president Zuma I felt that I must write back to you and thank you for being honest for the first time in your journalism career.

It is uncommon that a journalist will just apologize without being taken to court or the press council or succumbed to pressure.

However, I felt that I must convey my greatest disappointment in you and the media house you are working for. In your own words you have agreed that The Citizen has been telling us lies and cooked stories under your leadership as well as that of your former boss.

Unfortunately you did not mention who was pressurizing you or pointing a gun at you, while you published all those lies about Zuma. Let's assume you were not under pressure but you went with the flow. If you did, than you are no longer supposed to practice as a journalist. You have broken the code of conduct for professional journalism and ethics. As a result, your reporting of the ANC and the president in future and opposition parties will lack objectivity and credibility.

You have painted all the media with one brush, while it is only you who have come out about publishing mistruth. You further mention your colleagues as part of a sinister campaign. You must apologise to them and further you owe Citizen's readers and advertisers an apology for misleading them with untruthful stories.

It is you and your publication who complained about president Zuma even for suffering from constipation instead of taking laxatives. You claim that there is an anti-Zuma campaign in the media - that is a reckless statement from a seasoned journalist like you.

I am surprised that you just read Judge Squires' judgement now since it was published in 2005. That alone is a clear indication of ignorance from your side. I am tempted to say that you only reported what you have seen on other news channels in your publication by that time you haven't read the article. Surely you listened to those who read the newspapers?

You further failed to tell us who programmed you to believe that Zuma was to be a horrible president. I can safely say your letter lack some crucial details in order for us to understand your position on that one.

There is no need to blame the media for what you called " the media is as much to be blame for the current parlous state of this country’s politics and economy as the politicians and economists who have brought us here ". Do not blame the media but instead blame the politicians, media does not have a seat in parliament, as a result they don't make policies but politicians do.

In addition, your letter is not only addressed to Msholozi but also to journalists.

You ask them how Zuma will trust them and you in future ? President Zuma does not need to trust the media, so as the media they do not want to be trusted by the president.

Obviously you Mr MOTALE need to be trusted by the president and that is why you are doing damage control by your open letter to him. Us as readers of Citizen newspaper we don't want an editor who want to be trusted by politicians, as a result I am advising you to resign as the editor of the newspaper.

You said it yourself that your publication has a history of becoming a government praise singer, which I believe is a new direction you are taking.

I am not surprised you are not concerned that the Citizen newspaper is failing to compete even with regional newspapers and is lying in shelves unsold.

I suspect that you have observed that your publication is stagnating and very soon you will be jobless and you decided to position yourself for a high profile government position.

In closing, I must wish you luck and I am hoping that the president will find time to respond to you at his own convenience.

Regards

SABELO MKHONZA

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