Editorial: Cyril must blame ANC for negative press

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers

Published Apr 25, 2024


The sooner ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa realises that the ‘negative’ media coverage that his organisation is receiving is due to his party’s monumental failures, the better if the ANC is to truly self-correct and win the hearts of the voters.

The criticism the governing ANC has been subjected to must be seen as a reflection of its track record in government.

In a leaked audio recording, Ramaphosa can be heard stating that: “Where there’s negative reporting, we resolved that we’ll take that up. We want fair or even more than fair treatment because we are the governing party. TV stations have no right to be negative towards us and always not reporting on our activities or just continue branding us in a negative way.

“We agreed in the National Working Committee that there will be comrades who will be watching this space all the time, making sure that we take this issue up.”

Before we tell you why Ramaphosa’s comments border on interference and pose a threat to media freedom, we should highlight that the ANC is a hard-sell. It knows this all too well.

It wasted most of its time and the country’s resources fighting factional battles.

The country is limping from one crisis to another partly because of government incompetence and mismanagement. Indecisiveness, lack of accountability and transparency are terms that best describe Ramaphosa’s administration. We need not mention the misery that has been brought by load shedding, especially on people’s livelihoods.

Municipalities are collapsing under the ANC’s watch. The less said about SOEs the better. These failures far outweigh the progress that has been made since the dawn of democracy.

For the president to demand ‘positive’ coverage on the eve of a crucial election is an attempt to mask the ANC’s failures. Trying to dictate what the media should tell the public is blatant disregard of the country’s Constitution which protects free press.

Ramaphosa’s expectation boggles the mind when he himself has not provided satisfactory answers about the Phala Phala money in couches.

A free lesson from our beloved Mandela: “A critical, independent and investigative press is the lifeblood of any democracy.”

Cape Times