Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube Picture: Patrick Mtolo/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Durban - The Democratic Alliance in KwaZulu-Natal has filed a complaint with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) to probe the South African Broadcasting Corporation's (SABC) Ukhozi FM programme sponsored by the KwaZulu-Natal co-operative governance and traditional affairs department (Cogta).

"In the programme, which was aired last Sunday morning, a radio presenter was heard posing a question to the department’s MEC Nomusa Dube Ncube pertaining to a political issue involving the Democratic Alliance. The MEC is also heard responding and attacking the DA," KwaZulu-Natal DA leader Zwakele Mncwango said on Sunday.

It was important to note that it was not the first time that the MEC had used this government-sponsored slot to promote the African National Congress agenda, he said.

"We are concerned that the slot which is meant to be used to communicate government’s work in the province is now being used for irresponsible political point scoring. We have since asked the BCCSA to investigate the details of the contract between SABC and Cogta."

The DA believed there was a breach of section 13 (1) of the BCCSA code which stated “that presenting a programme in which a controversial issue of public importance is discussed, a broadcaster must make reasonable efforts to fairly present opposing points of view either in the same programme or in a subsequent programme forming part of the same series of programmes presented within a reasonable period of time of the original broadcast and within substantially the same time slot”.

"As we head closer to the 2019 general elections we will be keeping a close eye on the public broadcaster in order to make sure it is not used by government officials for their political ambitions and agendas.

"The DA urges the BCCSA to establish an investigation to ensure that this public broadcaster and the department are held accountable for using government departmental slots paid for by all South Africans through their taxes to push political agendas," Mncwango said.

African News Agency/ANA