FIRST ON EWN: SABC tried to cancel another show

Eyewitness News has learnt that SABC management tried to cancel an SAfm show on Wednesday.

Journalist and broadcaster, Siki Mgabadeli. Picture: SABC.

JOHANNESBURG - Eyewitness News can reveal that just hours after South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) management pulled a show about media coverage of Mangaung on Metro FM, they tried to cancel a slot on presenter Siki Mgabadeli's show on SAfm.

On Tuesday evening Sakina Kamwendo was forced to cancel a discussion with three political journalists about media coverage of the upcoming ANC elective conference.

The SABC said the show was cancelled in the interests of balance and fairness, because the ANC was not invited to participate in the talk.

Mgabadeli's Wednesday morning 'workers slot' featured Cosatu President Sdumo Dlamini and two analysts.

During the 10am news bulletin, an instruction was sent to the station manager from 'upstairs'.

The programming manager was then told to cancel the show because the ANC was not invited.

The alleged call came through despite the fact that guests were already lined up.

Mgabadeli said, "The concern was raised through my producer, who then informed me. I then told him what the line is in terms of the reasoning, whilst carrying on with the discussion."

While the presenter is diplomatic about the incident, Eyewitness News understands she threatened to pack her bags and walk out if she was pushed.

SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said there was no order to cancel the show, but the ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu was called at the last minute.

"The request from management was that the ANC needed to be present so it could answer questions."

Mgabadeli resigned from her position in November and did her last show on Friday.

She insists her resignation had nothing to do with this development.