Dismissed editor turns to courts

iol news pic Alide Dasnois INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Former Cape Times editor Alide Dasnois, recipient of the 2014 Nat Nakasa Courageous Journalism Award. File picture: Adrian de Kock

Cape Town - Dismissed Cape Times editor Alide Dasnois will approach the Labour Court following her dismissal, her lawyer said on Tuesday.

“The matter has been conciliated by the CCMA. We are now heading to the labour court,” said lawyer Jason White.

Papers would be filed within a month, he said.

Dasnois contended she was fired after the newspaper published a front-page article on Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's finding against Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.

It found that the minister was guilty of maladministration and improper and unethical conduct in the awarding of an R800 million tender to a Sekunjalo subsidiary to manage the state's fishery vessels.

Dasnois approached the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration following her dismissal in December last year.

The Cape Times is owned by Independent Newspapers, whose controlling shareholder is Sekunjalo Consortium.

In a year-end letter, Independent News and Media SA (INMSA) chairman Iqbal Survé said Dasnois was reprimanded for not leading the paper with the news about the death of former president Nelson Mandela.

Mandela died in December at his home in Houghton, Johannesburg, aged 95.

Alison Tilley of the Open Democracy Advice Centre said her organisation was helping with the case and was raising funds for Dasnois.

“We think this is a public interest issue. Employees in the workplace should be able to speak up and still be safe. We are hoping for a positive outcome for Alide,” she said.

The matter also involved the right of journalists and editors on what to publish against what media owners want published, she said.

Independent Newspapers declined to comment and said the matter was an internal labour issue.

Sapa


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