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Safrea: SABC top guns must be held accountable

Laura Rawden says it’s difficult for journalists to stand up for what they believe in.

SABC headquarters in Johannesburg. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - The Southern African Freelancers' Association (Safrea) says high ranking officials at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) should be held accountable for restricting journalists from doing their jobs.

A number of organisations have come forward raising concerns about censorship at the SABC, saying political interference and leadership issues have created problems at the national broadcaster.

The National Union of Metalworkers of South African (Numsa) has strongly condemned the suspension of three journalists who questioned the ban on visual coverage of protests, saying they should be reinstated immediately.

Safrea's Laura Rawden says it's difficult for journalists to stand up for what they believe in because they could face suspension.

"It's been made very clear that if they stand up for the rights of their job and what they are doing for the people, they could be fired. You don't want to put people in that position, it gives them an unfair choice. I think more support needs to be extended to journalists. I think we need to direct a lot of action to the higher ranking officials in the SABC and hold them accountable for what they do."