Johannesburg - The government has put together a strict set of media guidelines for Madiba’s state funeral and other events, warning the more than 2 000 journalists expected to act professionally and not get drunk.
Failure to do so will see them ejected and have their broadcasting frequency revoked.
The Government Communication and Information Service (GCIS) has had its hands full over the last few days trying to attend to glitches in the system for things like accreditation. The GCIS is also busy negotiating as to which international and local broadcasters will be allowed to broadcast the funeral and official memorial service proceedings.
GCIS chief executive Phumla Williams told The Star on Sunday the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa) “biggest headache” so far has been the constant interception of frequency by some broadcasters without permission.
On the code of conduct, Williams agreed “it’s very strict”.
The guidelines state that: “Any member of the media believed to be intoxicated, under the influence of mood-altering substances or acting in an unprofessional manner will have their media accreditation revoked and be escorted out of the media area with possible denial of future accreditation to individual perpetrators and/or their affiliated media organisation.”
added, “We will be having inspectors mingling because I guess they have their own gadgets for picking up some of the transgressors and they were saying that we will not hesitate, we will cancel your frequency… should you transgress,” said Williams.
The GCIS is also responsible for appointing the “host broadcaster” for events.
Williams said the GCIS was still considering which foreign and local media house will be afforded the right to broadcast along with the SABC.
She said they had to “concede” that the country now has eNCA news network which would have to be accommodated after making “minor adjustments”.