Independent Media has announced two new editorial appointments as part of the ongoing revitalisation and transformation of its newsrooms.
Veteran journalist Steve Motale, 52, has returned to Independent Media, to take over the editorship of The Sunday Independent. Motale is a former executive editor of the Pretoria News, which is part of the Independent Media stable. Motale left Independent just prior to Sekunjalo’s acquisition of Independent Media was consolidated, as he was headhunted by The Citizen to become its editor. He went on to edit The Citizen for three years.
Executive Chairman of Independent Media, Dr Iqbal Survé said that Motale has come back home to Independent.
“His appointment is aligned with our approach to transformation at senior editorial and executive level and supports our objective of pursuing black excellence in the media space. Mr Motale brings great diversity to our Gauteng publications where our readers can find contested views and opinions in our various titles including The Star, Sunday Independent, Saturday Star, Pretoria News and Isolezwe (Gauteng), as well as African Independent.
We are proud that our group emphasises a diversity of opinions, accuracy in reporting and fairness and has taken a non-partisan approach to political issues in the country. Independent’s titles as a whole are showing an increase in circulation and this can be attributed to readers increasingly trusting our balanced and diversified editorial viewpoints. Mr Motale’s appointment strengthens that diversity in our editorial appointments with our 24 titles and over 10 million daily readers online and in print.
I am pleased to welcome Steve back home. I have every confidence in his ability to grow Sunday Independent’s niche readership base – both in print and online. I wish him success with this exciting new challenge.”
Born and bred in the Free State, Motale matriculated in Kroonstad and qualified as a high school teacher, spending 16 years in the classroom before moving to journalism on a local community paper in Klerksdorp. Over and above qualifications in teaching and communication, Motale is a graduate of Wits University’s Management Advancement Programme. He is married with two children.
“It feels like a homecoming,” he said, “I’m very excited about the opportunity. The Sunday Independent is an iconic brand with huge potential and I look forward to taking it to where it belongs.”
Krisendra “Krissy” Bisetty, has been promoted to the position of Editor of Post, Independent Media’s niche weekly publication for the Indian community in Kwazulu-Natal.
Bisetty is a seasoned journalist who has spent 15 years in various roles at Independent titles, most recently as acting editor of the Post since November 2016. In this position, Bisetty is helping to steer the 62-year-old title into a national publication, circulating in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and the Western Cape.
“I am greatly honoured to be given this opportunity to enhance the Post’s status as South Africa’s number one news brand around the Indian cultural identity,” said Bisetty.
“We want to showcase the successes of this community, cover its trials and tribulations, help preserve its heritage and culture and build bridges with other communities.”
He said he is fully committed to executive chairman Dr Iqbal Survé’s vision, and Independent’s mission, to lead the new media revolution.
“Steve and Krissy are both respected journalists who work with integrity and flair. I have no doubt that their contribution to the quality of their publications will enhance the experience of both its readers and advertisers. I wish them and their respective teams every success,” said Dr Survé.