The Diplomatic Society

 
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
‘Freedom of expression not under threat’

Pretoria – Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe has reiterated government’s commitment to the Constitution, saying it had no intention of doing anything to undermine freedom of expression.

“Our democracy is not only based on the Constitution but it is also underpinned by the principle of judicial review. Government is committed to continue conducting its public work transparently, as well as facilitating access to information for the public,” said Motlanthe.

Addressing a meeting between government and the South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) on 30 October 2011, Motlanthe noted that with SA increasingly playing a key role in international relations, it had become increasingly important for the public to understand some of the complex issues that related to the country’s foreign policy.

“Government and the media can work to enlighten the people on these complex issues.”

The two-day high-level meeting between the executive and senior leaders of the media aimed to maintain good working relations between government and the media.

Motlanthe stressed that both government and the media had a common responsibility to promote a free, open and democratic society. He said South Africa had made great strides and remarkable progress in creating an environment in which the media was free to operate without intimidation or harassment.

However, he acknowledged more still needed to be done.

“… There is still room for improvement in our communication with the public… this weakness will be corrected urgently.”

Echoing Motlanthe’s sentiments, Minister in the Presidency for Performance Monitoring, Evaluation and Administration, Collins Chabane said the media had a responsibility to inform citizens accurately about what was happening within and outside the country.

“Government has to ensure that the media has access to accurate information timeously to ensure that it is transmitted to the citizens properly with its intended objectives. The media also has to ensure that there is fairness and accuracy in its reporting, especially in a young democratic state like ours.

“The media needs to further ensure that facts are verified and stories are balanced enough to allow the consumers of news to exercise their discretion and make up their minds about information placed before them.”

SANEF chairperson Mondli Makhanya highlighted the importance of such meetings, saying they helped to build trust between the government and media.

“These two institutions are vital in South Africa and committed to create a robust and healthy South Africa. There are areas we share common interests and even when we fight, it should not be hostile or war.”

The meeting concluded that government and the media had to establish and sustain mutual trust and respect to help consolidate the democracy envisioned in the Constitution.

It further highlighted that engagement between government and South Africa’s news media should be directed towards assisting the country’s continuing transition from apartheid to democracy, and building national pride and self-belief, without stifling critical public debate.

This was the sixth high-level consultation between the parties since 2001. – BuaNews
 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
_________________________________________________

May 2017 Edition

_________________________________________________

Translater


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

AU - EU has a strong Partnership 22 May 2017 Dr. Amani Abou-Zeid, the African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy has stated that the AU-EU partnership is one of the most structured of... <|> Travel across Africa 19 May 2017 Africa Visa Openness Index notes that Africans were able to travel more freely across the continent in 2016 compared to 2015. The African Development Bank in... <|> Hungary and South Africa Water cooperation 24 May 2017 Mr Szilverszter Bus, Deputy State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade for Hungary was in South Africa. A cooperation... <|> Ecuador – The Republic of Opportunities 24 May 2017 Ambassador Maria Soledad Cordova Montero of Ecuador to South Africa hosted an Expo showcasing products of Ecuador.  These included... <|> Easing travel regulations between South Africa and Kenya 3 May 2016 South Africa and Kenya have announced measures that will make travelling between the two countries easier. South African Home... <|> 28th Anniversary of the Republic of Azerbaijan 30 May 2017 The Charge d’Affaires of the Republic of Azerbaijan in Pretoria, Mr. Azad Naghiyev and Mrs. Sabina Naghiyeva hosted a reception to... <|> Cubans celebrate Africa Day 31 May 2017 Ambassador Carlos Fernández de Cossío of Cuba hosted a cocktail lunch for Cuban professionals working in South Africa to celebrate Africa Day. The venue... <|> Georgia Independence Day 26 May 2017 Ambassador Beka Dvali of Georgia in South Africa hosted a reception to celebrate the Day of Independence of Georgia, a day that every Georgian cherishes, he... <|> 10th Annual Cape Town Steelband Festival 5 June 2017 The sounds of the steelpan reverberated in Cape Town, South Africa on May 11, 2017 as students, young people and steelpan enthusiasts took to... <|> Marla Mossman: One person making a Difference for Peace 5 June 2017 In a series of interviews The Diplomatic Society Global Editor Srimal Fernando began interviewing notable personalities who... <|>
© copyright 2011-2017| The Diplomatic Society| All Rights Reserved.