06 May 2019
The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) condemns the criminal targeting of the offices of Bayede news, ElaboHlanga and Ubukhozi newspapers under the Igunundu Press in KwaZulu-Natal this weekend.
Five armed men broke in and stole all the computers, cameras and office equipment. This is a harsh blow to the news operation on the eve of elections and as a result, they have not been able to print their latest publication.
This not only impacts on media freedom at this critical juncture in the run-up to elections but has a negative impact on the marginalised communities who rely on the newspapers for perspectives carried in their own language.
Sanef urges SAPS to make every effort to find the culprits and recover the equipment as soon as possible. This is especially a blow to their audiences in far-flung areas who rely on them as a source of news and information.
Editor Mr Nhlanhla Mtaka said: “While this cowardly act is meant to put a spanner in our publishing works, it will not dissuade us from meaningfully engaging with our readership across all platforms in order to enable them to take informed decisions about their future far beyond elections. We are committed in ensuring that South Africans participate beyond the election.”
For more information contact:
Nhlanhla Mtaka – Sanef member, 083 336 4323
Judy Sandison – Sanef KZN Convenor, 0825713334