Sanef implores journalists to tread carefully when exercising freedom of speech
Sanef says freedom of speech should be enjoyed within the confines of the Constitution.
CAPE TOWN - The South African National Editors Forum (Sanef) has implored journalists to tread carefully when exercising their freedom of speech.
It comes after eNCA's senior news anchor, Andrew Barnes, was suspended for seemingly mocking Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga for mispronouncing an English word.
Barnes later apologised.
My heartfelt apologies for the hurtful comment I made about the Education Minister's English today. You all expect more of me. I'm sorry.
- Andrew Barnes (@andrewTbarnes) January 6, 2016
At the same time, freelance journalist Carien Du Plessis has been banned by the ANC from attending the party's 'January Eighth' celebrations in Rustenburg.
Du Plessis sent out a tweet describing people who would attend the event as 'pantypreneurs'.
She also apologised shortly thereafter.
I realise the term “pantypreneur” is problematic. Thank you for the engagement and my unqualified apologies for using it in my tweet.— carien du plessis (@carienduplessis) January 7, 2016
Sanef chairperson Mpumelelo Mkhabela says, "We think the ANC should rise above this. We don't condone the utterances by [Carien] du Plessis. We agree that they are offensive - they go beyond defensible speech - but we think the ANC should come to the party and rise above it."
Sanef says freedom of speech should be enjoyed within the confines of the Constitution and not seek to unnecessarily offend or cause hatred.