The Sundy Indy editor on stress leave

The Sunday Independent - - NEWS -

IN­DE­PEN­DENT Me­dia has granted The Sun­day In­de­pen­dent editor Steven Mo­tale stress leave with im­me­di­ate ef­fect.

“Mo­tale has in­di­cated to In­de­pen­dent Me­dia that he has re­ceived death threats re­cently and re­quested time to deal with the trauma of this sit­u­a­tion.

“In­de­pen­dent Me­dia wishes Mr Mo­tale and his fam­ily well dur­ing this dif­fi­cult pe­riod,” a state­ment said.

In­de­pen­dent Me­dia ex­ec­u­tive chair­man Dr Iqbal Survé, who is re­turn­ing from the 9th Brics Sum­mit in China, has re­quested the editor of The Star, Japhet Ncube, to serve as act­ing editor of The Sun­day In­de­pen­dent.

“The past few days have been chal­leng­ing for the editor and the ed­i­to­rial team at The Sun­day In­de­pen­dent.

“It is im­por­tant to give Steven the nec­es­sary time off while at the same time, en­sur­ing sta­bil­ity at The Sun­day In­de­pen­dent,” said Survé.

On Wed­nes­day Mo­tale is­sued a state­ment that was posted on IOL re­spond­ing to re­ac­tion that the news­pa­per’s Septem­ber 3 lead ar­ti­cle on Deputy Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa’s al­leged in­fi­deli­ties was a “smear cam­paign”, aimed at in­flu­enc­ing the out­come of the ANC pol­icy con­fer­ence.

The Sun­day In­de­pen­dent ar­ti­cle re­veals the de­tails of e-mails leaked to Mo­tale link­ing Ramaphosa to a string of ex­tra-mar­i­tal af­fairs.

Mo­tale said he started re­ceiv­ing death threats from call­ers claim­ing to be Ramaphosa’s sup­port­ers soon after send­ing ques­tions to one of the women al­legedly ro­man­ti­cally linked to him. Mo­tale’s ques­tions to Ramaphosa’s pri­vate e-mail ac­counts which he sent with his cell­phone num­ber were leaked on so­cial me­dia last Fri­day.

Mo­tale was also with Kenny Kunene shortly be­fore the car the busi­ness­man and so­cialite was trav­el­ling in was shot at in Joburg on Tues­day night.

He said he was not with Kunene when he was “am­bushed” as his body­guards had ad­vised them not to travel in the same car after a sus­pi­cious car was seen ear­lier in the evening.

On Wed­nes­day, Ramaphosa had told MPs in the As­sem­bly that he would take them and other South Africans into his con­fi­dence “in a day or two” around “mat­ters of a per­sonal na­ture”. – Staff Re­porter

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