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The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) strongly condemns public order policing action in Eersterust, Pretoria during service delivery protests in the area.


A number of innocent people suffered serious injuries including skull fractures when more than 20 public order police officers opened fire with rubber bullets during a protest on Wednesday.


Citizen photographer Jacques Nelles had a rubber bullet wound in his back while senior reporter Virginia Keppler broke her leg and ankle while running for cover. Pretoria News reporter Sakhile Ndlazi was also hit on the back of his head by a rubber bullet. A number of Eersterust citizens were seriously hurt including a 61-year old man, Arthur Moses who died in his home after inhaling tear gas.


SANEF strongly condemns this action by police and is taking up Tshwane Mayor, Solly Msimanga’s call to open a case with the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid). SANEF notes the fact that there have been a number of incidents of abuse of journalists by the police in recent times. We note the most recent incident of police abuse in Chatsworth where Sunday Tribune journalist, Karinda Jagmohan was physically manhandled and abused while covering protests outside the Chatsworth police station in May. The protests erupted as a response to the death of 9-year old Sadia Sukhraj in a hijacking and shootout in Shallcross, Chatsworth.


SANEF expects that in the lead up to South Africa’s 2019 elections there will be increasing numbers of community protests about lack of service delivery, crime, land and related issues. We note the fact that is essential that police act with impeccable professionalism and in the interests of citizens in these circumstances. Both citizens and journalists must be protected. These are critical elections – journalists must be able to report without fear or favour and in circumstances that protect their safety.


For more information please contact:

Mahlatse Mahlase – SANEF Chairperson

083 399 2852


Sam Mkokeli – SANEF Media Freedom Committee Coordinator

082 084 2051


Kate Skinner – SANEF Executive Director

082 926 6404




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Deadline for Submissions to the Independent Inquiry into Media Ethics and Credibility Extended

SANEF has launched an Inquiry into Media Ethics with a panel of commissioners headed by retired judge Kathleen Satchwell, including panellists Nikiwe Bikitsha and Rich Mkhondo. The aim of the Inquiry is to investigate what went wrong with some of our journalism in recent years and how we can strengthen it so that trust and alliances between us and the public can be built. If you are aware of any ethical breaches, evidence of capture of journalists by their sources, capture of publications or media houses, bribery of journalists or any other issues linked to credibility or ethics, including examples of best practice journalism, please contact the panel via the following email address:
Please note the deadline for written submissions is 31 January 2020. Submissions can be sent to the same email address. There is no specific format for submissions but please back all your claims with evidence and facts and ensure that you include your contact details.
Click here for a link to the terms of reference of the Inquiry.