PRETORIA – The Film and Publication Board (FPB) on Tuesday said it will classify ‘The Spear’ image despite conceding it has no jurisdiction over newspapers.
The announcement was made at a hearing in Centurion, Pretoria.
The controversial image shows President Jacob Zuma with his genitals exposed.
Monday’s ruling means the image could be deemed sexually explicit and it could bear an age restriction.
FPB's Mmapula Fisha said officials have a responsibility to protect children.
She said the committee will finish classifying the painting within the next week.
Fisha said the board was aware that it did not have jurisdiction over newspapers, a claim argued by legal representatives from the City Press.
FPB went ahead with the hearing to allow the newspaper to make representations.
Fisha said the complaint would be forwarded to the press ombudsman once the painting was classified.
Earlier, Advocate Steven Budlender asked the committee to dismiss the case because the publication was subject to the press code, as stipulated in the Film and Publications Act.
On Monday, City Press editor Ferial Haffejee decided to remove the image from their website, saying she was extending an olive branch to the ANC.
(Edited by Zethu Zulu)