SAHRC to probe conduct of eNCA journo Lindsay Dentlinger over mask incident

This follows a backlash over interviews she conducted with politicians following Finance Minister Tito Mboweni's Budget speech last month.

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC). Picture: www.sahrc.org.za

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has launched an own-accord investigation into the circumstances surrounding the conduct of eNCA journalist, Lindsay Dentlinger.

This follows a backlash over interviews she conducted with politicians following Finance Minister Tito Mboweni's Budget speech last month.

The grievances allege that Dentlinger treated interviewees differently - based on their race - when she asked black politicians to keep their masks on while allowing their white counterparts to be interviewed without.

The commission has requested to meet with eNCA and Dentlinger.

ANC COMPLAINTS

On Tuesday, members of the African National Congress (ANC) picketed outside the head office in Hyde Park.

The party said that it would submit a formal complaint to the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) and the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) regarding the incident. The ANC's Jessie Duarte also urged Icasa to investigate whether eNCA's conduct was inconsistent with its licence conditions.

The ANC has given eNCA six demands which include apologising to all South Africans for the pain and hurt caused by the company and senior journalist Dentilinger.

The party wants eNCA to withdraw its statement in which it defends Dentlinger and insists that her behaviour did not amount to racism.

It also wants the entire team - from journalists to management - to go for diversity training.

The party also insisted that the broadcaster should do "soul-searching" and confront their own racism and prejudice.

The ANC's Jessie Duarte said that they also wanted eNCA to show they were remorseful.

“eNCA is to issue an unambiguous statement that it will no longer allow racism within its ranks and to do something practical to show genuine remorse on its part.”

The party is also urging other media houses to take a firm stand against racism.

WATCH: eNCA given seven days to acknowledge ANC’s racism complaints

Additional reporting by Mia Lindeque.

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