The Democratic Alliance (DA) says it has filed a supplementary affidavit in its ongoing case against the SABC and Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
According to the opposition party, it also requested the Western Cape High Court to discount the representations made to the Court by former SABC Acting Group CEO, Jimmi Matthews.
The party believes that this move will give Mr Matthews a golden opportunity to correct his statements to the Court in an affidavit he lodged in Mr Motsoeneng’s stay application earlier this month.
Recall that in former SABC Acting Group CEO Mr Jimi Matthew’s earlier affidavit, he sang the praises of SABC COO, Hlaudi Motsoeneng, claiming that his presence at the SABC is vital to the public broadcaster and that the SABC would effectively suffer without Motsoeneng’s leadership.
However, in his recent resignation former SABC Acting Group CEO Mr Jimi Matthews cites that he left the SABC because of the “corrosive atmosphere” at the SABC which has become untenable under Mr Motsoeneng’s leadership.
His resignation came hot on the heels of several politically motivated suspensions of those who spoke out against the embattled SABC COO- who turned the public broadcaster into his own personal fiefdom, hell-bent on reporting only good news about the ANC and President Jacob Zuma.
Meanwhile, reports had it that three senior SABC journalists were charged today for airing their concerns in a letter about the broadcaster’s controversial editorial policies.
The senior journalists who faced the internal disciplinary charges are: SAfm Current Affairs executive producer Krivani Pillay‚ Special Assignment executive producer Busisiwe Ntuli and senior investigative reporter Jacques Steenkamp.
The trio wrote a letter to SABC chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng‚ saying that editorial decisions at the broadcaster amounted to censorship.
They also reminded the COO that their newsrooms had become sources of “derision‚ despair and criticism.”
“As journalists having to operationalise the policies of this public institution‚ we feel aggrieved that journalistic integrity continues to be compromised.
We wish to register our deep concern for our colleagues who have been suspended for expressing their right to freedom of expression by simply debating and assessing the newsworthiness of events as expected‚” the trio stated in the letter.
Several decisions made under Motsoeneng have been perceived as undermining the SABC’s political independence and ability to serve the interests of the people. These decisions include: banning all negative news about President Jacob Zuma, banning the reading of newspaper headlines on air and banning coverage of violent protests.