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ANC welcomes ruling on current broadcasting policy

Media houses argued certain sections of Parliament’s policy, such as 'disorder clause' were unconstitutional.

FILE: Members of the media gathered in their numbers, patiently waiting for President Zuma to arrive for the State of the Nation Address 2015. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress (ANC) has welcomed the Western Cape High Court's ruling that Parliament's current broadcast policy should stay.

Primedia Broadcasting and several other organisations approached the High Court, arguing certain sections of Parliament's policy, in particular the so-called 'disorder clause' were unconstitutional.

They launched the challenge after the cameras did not show the forcible removal of Economic Freedom Fighters Members of Parliament from the National Assembly during the president's State of the Nation Address in February.

The ANC's Moloto Mothapo says the court's decision supports Parliament argument.

"It confirms what we've always know that Parliament will not unduly hinder the operations of the media in Parliament. Because it is these institutions that made the laws that give expression to our constitutional democracy."

Only shaky, illegally recorded cell phone footage of the scuffles showed what actually happened.

The applicants' case was that members of the public have the right to see how their MPs behave because it allows them to make informed decisions at the polls.

But Parliament had questioned the applicants "insatiable appetite for reality television", claiming Parliament has the right to take reasonable measures to regulate access.