A video of a national news show is circulating the internet, showing news anchor Eben Jansen prematurely dismissing his guest, EFF Spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, in the midst of their “statue” discussion.

SABC news anchor Eben Jansen seemed to have lost the plot on live TV on Thursday night when instead of interviewing an EFF leader, he began a five-minute lecture on the history of colonialism.

Twitter was abuzz with users condemning Jansen for his handling of the interview about the removal of colonial statues.

Jansen was interviewing the EFF’s spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi during his prime-time slot Newsroom, which airs on SABC’s channel 404.

In fact, he became so emotional about the statue-defacing debate that he wouldn’t allow Ndlozi to speak, eventually shutting him out of the show.

In an ambiguously framed question that seemed to have irritated the interviewee, Jansen asked if EFF’s protest was an attempt to diminish the history of other groups of people.

“What is the difference when you are trying to diminish the history of others?”

Ndlozi says: “If you give me an opportunity to speak, I am trying to demonstrate the intellectual bankruptcy of your question.”

He went on to tell Jansen his question was fundamentally wrong.

“In fact, it misreads the entire narrative of colonisation. The government that stands is not a colonial government, it is a post-colonial government.”

Jansen then accused Ndlozi of hijacking the UCT student protest and claiming it as the EFF’s own.

* Video: Ndlozi interview begins at 19.15*

He said the government did not destroy the statue and blamed the EFF, pressing Ndlozi to explain why the EFF was diminishing the history of other groups, adding that everywhere this happened, genocide followed.

Ndlozi replied: “The history being destroyed is not a progressive history. If you put the statue of Hitler in the middle of Tel Aviv, the Jewish people will be offended.”

He said the statues of both Paul Kruger and Cecil John Rhodes were no longer relevant and must be done away with.

Jansen, who appeared to be overcome with passion, continued to accuse Ndlozi and the EFF of hijacking the protest.

When Ndlozi tried to reply and desperately asked to be afforded an opportunity to speak, and even addressed him as “my man”, Jansen shut him out.

“I am not your man. I am actually not going to allow you to speak.”

He then moved on to other items on the show.

 

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The Star