SABC has until Wednesday to explain decision behind violent protests’ ban

Media Monitoring Africa laid a formal complaint with Icasa saying the SABC is censoring news.

FILE: A bus was set alight and roads blocked in Hammanskraal following service delivery protests in the area. Picture: Arrive Alive.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has confirmed that the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has now given it until Wednesday, to submit its reasons behind the recent decision not to broadcast images of state property being destroyed during protests.

Lobby group, Media Monitoring Africa, laid a formal complaint with the watchdog saying the SABC's decision amounts to censorship and must be reviewed.

At the same time, the Right to Know campaign delivered a memorandum of grievances at the public broadcaster's headquarters today over its editorial policy.

The SABC's Kaizer Kganyago says they need more time to make submissions outlining their reasons for not showing destruction during protests.

"When the ruling was made on Wednesday, the following day was a holiday. Therefore we did not have enough time to put the documents they need together."

Kganyago says the SABC's recent decision is not censorship, but rather responsible reporting.

"We will cover these protests but where people deliberately burn properties to try and make a point, we are not going to show those images."

LISTEN:_ SABC explains decision to halt broadcasts of violent protests_

Meanwhile, the Right to Know campaign has accused SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng of showing no respect for editorial independence.

The organisation's Mark Weinberg has called for Motsoeneng's removal.

"We honestly believe he has no legitimacy and no place in the SABC management and we think he should be removed immediately."