Media appeals tribunal to be ‘independent’

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Mail & Guardian reports that South Africa’s ruling ANC party is adamant that the country’s media be regulated by an ‘independent’ body to prevent political or commercial interference.

ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said on 6 March that such a tribunal should be granted powers to impose ‘appropriate sanctions’ in keeping with the Constitution.

The question remains as to who exactly would appoint the ‘independent’ tribunal and how it would maintain its independence.

These media appeal tribunal discussions occur against the backdrop of the recent passing of the contentious Protection of State Information Bill, dubbed the Secrecy Bill, which is seen as significantly curtailing the freedom of the press.

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