SACP says eNCA must take strong stance against Kanthan Pillay over ‘rat’ tweet
Pillay was forced to apologise to journalist Samkele Maseko and the SABC on Thursday.
JOHANNESBURG – While 24-hour news channel eNCA investigates its head of news Kanthan Pillay after allegations of editorial interference, the South African Communist Party (SACP) on Thursday said his actions had already damaged the integrity of the media.
Pillay was forced to apologise to journalist Samkele Maseko and the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
After Maseko resigned from the news channel this week, Pillay posted a tweet in which he appeared to compare him to a rat and the SABC to a sinking ship.
This prompted Maseko, who will be joining the public broadcaster next year, to reveal allegations of censorship by Pillay.
The disrespect you have for an African Black Child is appalling, you have no sense of appreciation none whatsoever. We are not here to play politics and settle political scores with the EFF like you are doing. Busy sensoring political talk and instructing things to taken of air https://t.co/qnKkpnGoX4— #TheLordOfTheMedia (@samkelemaseko) December 18, 2019
Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bhongo be sensored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan? What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves https://t.co/qnKkpnGoX4— #TheLordOfTheMedia (@samkelemaseko) December 18, 2019
Listen here and listen good, you may be pulling strings there at @eNCA but you will refer to your family as Rats and not Black African Children. Settle your political scores using eNCA but disrespect us for dumping ship led by a failed politician. https://t.co/qnKkpnGoX4— #TheLordOfTheMedia (@samkelemaseko) December 18, 2019
Want to speak about how you canned an SAA story saying a journalist is an imbongi of the workers, wanting Journalists to find faults with workers at all costs whilst protecting bosses. https://t.co/qnKkpnGoX4— #TheLordOfTheMedia (@samkelemaseko) December 18, 2019
There were calls for eNCA to fire Pillay, who this year led the Capitalist Party of South Africa - otherwise known as the “Purple Cow” - to the polls.
“This racist reaction is an insult to Africans in particular. It is completely unacceptable and must have no place in our society. The SACP condemns it in the strongest terms possible. eNCA must apologise to South Africans, get to the bottom of the matter and get rid of Pillay,” the SACP said in a statement.
“The SACP will continue pushing media transformation and the struggle for a non-racial society.”
Other political parties have weighed in on the matter calling for Pillay’s head.
The South African National Editors' Forum also asked for a meeting with eNCA.