THE South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) has thrown its weight behind editors in the Eastern Cape who refused to allow the African National Congress (ANC) to campaign in their newsrooms‚ ahead of the national elections.
Last week sister publication Daily Dispatch reported that its editor Bongani Siqoko and other newsroom leaders shot down a request by the ANC in the Eastern Cape to allow the party to campaign in its newsroom to reporters.
The ANC said it wanted to bring its election message to the newsroom as all South Africans‚ including journalists‚ had the right to vote.
However‚ editors mostly declined the request‚ saying the range of 139 parties could not all be accommodated in busy newsroom schedules.
Sanef chairman and Sowetan editor Mpumelelo Mkhabela said the forum believed it would be wrong for any political party to canvas for votes in a newsroom.
“Sanef supports the editors who declined requests by the ANC in the Eastern Cape to lobby for electoral support in their respective newsrooms.
We believe the approach to editors was misguided and unnecessary‚” Mr Mkhabela said. © BDlive 2013