SA media body hits back at Blade

2012-11-02 16:44
Natasha Joseph
Print and Digital Media South Africa (PDMSA) says it is “surprised” by statements SA Communist Party (SACP) leader Blade Nzimande made about the country’s media this week.

Joburg daily, The Star, reported today that Nzimande had accused South African media of actively opposing the Tripartite Alliance and President Jacob Zuma’s government.

Nzimande was addressing the SACP’s conference of commissars, The Star reported, and had particularly strong words for the country’s big three media organisations – Media24, Independent Newspapers and Times Media.

PDMSA chief executive Ingrid Louw said in a statement that Nzimande’s attack came “at a time when print media in South Africa has shown renewed commitment to transformation and a system of independent co-regulation”.

Louw said: “Our commitment to creating an integrated and accountable self-regulatory mechanism has been evident.

“This process began with the Press Freedom Commission and culminated in the announcement of sweeping reforms to the South African Press Code, Procedures and the Constitution of the South African Press Council on October 3.”

She said PDMSA was “committed to transformation”.

“PDMSA constantly consults with all its stakeholders in an attempt to seek workable solutions to the issues which face the media. As a result we enjoy positive relationships with Parliament, the (Government Communication and Information Service) GCIS and the representative body for community media in South Africa, the Media Diversity and Development Agency (MDDA),” Louw said.

“Our industry is one in transition. PDMSA is resolute in developing a programme to address the transformation imperatives within the context of a free and independent press as enshrined in our Constitution.

“The PDMSA takes great exception to the statements made by Mr Nzimande as we believe the press has shown commitment to addressing issues of transformation and a transparent system of regulation.”