Only SABC given ac­cess to crowded tar­mac

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - Lebogang Seale and Sapa

THE SOUTH African Na­tional Ed­i­tors Fo­rum (Sanef) has ex­pressed dis­ap­pointed with the gov­ern­ment for the se­lec­tive treat­ment of me­dia houses at yes­ter­day’s hand­ing over cer­e­mony of the Nige­rian build­ing col­lapse vic­tims.

With the ex­cep­tion of the SABC, me­dia houses were not granted ac­cess to the tar­mac of Waterk­loof air force base.

“It’s dis­ap­point­ing to learn that there was no full ac­cess to all me­dia as this is a na­tional event and not a pri­vate af­fair to oth­ers,” said Sanef chair­man Mpumelelo Mkha­bela.

He said Sanef would take up the mat­ter with the gov­ern­ment.

Phumla Wil­liams, speak­ing on be­half of the in­ter­min­is­te­rial task team on Nige­ria, said the South African Na­tional De­fence Force could not ac­com­mo­date all me­dia houses.

“A com­pro­mise was made to al­low one (me­dia house/broad­caster) who would in turn pro­vide the feed to other me­dia houses,” she said.

Wil­liams said the lack of space had even limited the num­ber of in­vited guests. She added that the SANDF was strict about se­cu­rity.

Since 6am, more than 20 jour­nal­ists had been at the of­fi­cers’ mess, where they were sup­posed to col­lect ac­cred­i­ta­tion for the day’s pro­ceed­ings. Jour­nal­ists were told that shut­tle buses would trans­port them to the base, but on two oc­ca­sions they boarded the buses, only to be told to alight. They were taken to the base just after noon. –

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