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MultiChoice, EWN & NPA reach agreement

Three parties have agreed on how to broadcast the murder trial of Oscar Pistorius.

Oscar Pistorius. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Counsel for MultiChoice and Eyewitness News (EWN) have told the High Court in Pretoria they have reached an agreement with the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) on how to broadcast the murder trial of Oscar Pistorius.

Several media houses approached the court seeking permission to broadcast live and take pictures in court for the duration of the trial, which starts on 3 March.

Pistorius shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his Pretoria-East home on 14 February 2013.

Oscar Pistorius and his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at the Feather Awards on 4 November 2012. Picture: AFP.

While he claims it was an accident, the state will argue it was a case of murder.

Advocate Frank Snyckers says the agreement between MultiChoice, EWN and the NPA is unique and infers acceptance of the order they are seeking.

He says the parties will use remarkable and revolutionary camera technology, with spy cameras mounted in the courtroom.

Snyckers says the judge will also be given the option to deactivate the camera if she feels it appropriate.

He says media houses want to broadcast an audio feed of all the proceedings as well as televise all arguments, judgment and testimony of expert witnesses.

The advocate adds that witnesses will have a veto if they do not consent to being televised.

The defence will oppose the application.

Meanwhile, EWN editor-in-chief Katy Katopodis says the decision to launch the application was carefully considered, adding that portions of the trial need to be broadcast in the public interest.

She believes the matter could be precedent setting, and is an important case for the courts to decide for the media industry.

To read the full press release, click here.

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