702 stands by decision to end interview with Social Development spokesperson

The 702 breakfast show had arranged to speak to spokesperson for the Department of Social Development, Lumka Oliphant, on Monday morning, about plans for the SASSA payments from 1 April 2017.

When she came on air with presenter, Xolani Gwala, she started to speak in isiZulu, rather than in English, which is the medium of the station. Gwala made it clear that she needed to make her comments in English, to cater to the audience, but she persisted in isiZulu, without acknowledging the request. After further unsuccessful requests to Oliphant to speak in English, Gwala ended the interview.

702 feels that it was not unreasonable for Gwala to expect Oliphant to respond in English.

We have on many previous occasions engaged with Ms Oliphant on air and other forms of correspondence in English, including communication which she has initiated.

Thabisile Mbete, 702 Station Manager

702 has noted criticism of this decision, based on the fact that isiZulu is one of the 11 official languages and spokesperson Oliphant was within her rights to speak whichever of these languages she chose to. 702 remains committed to the promotion of a diversity of languages and this is a topic that is often discussed on the 702 platform. In addition, when a caller or guest is better able to express themselves in a language that is not English, arrangements are made for them to speak in their home tongue, and for their comments to be translated into English, as this is the medium of the station, as per the broadcast license issued and regulated by ICASA.

Oliphant herself has been given the opportunity to speak on 702 in isiXhosa once before, on Eusebius McKaiser’s show when the discussion was translated.

We felt that in this instance, Oliphant had been given ample opportunity to request an interview in another language, as she had been in discussion with the producers of the show since Sunday.

Thabisile Mbete, 702 Station Manager

If she had made this request ahead of time, we could have allocated additional time to the interview, to allow Xolani to translate.

Immediately prior to the interview with Xolani, she had conducted another interview in English, on SABC’s Morning Live and we feel that her decision to speak in isiZulu was nothing more than an attempt to obfuscate the actual issue under discussion.”
In addition to not shedding any light on whether the SASSA payments will be made in April, she has also undermined the very important issue of linguistic diversity in South Africa.”

Thabisile Mbete, 702 Station Manager

Listen here to how the interview unfolded:


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
 Officials benefitted from Sassa/CPS contract - Scopa chair

Officials benefitted from Sassa/CPS contract - Scopa chair

Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts chair says Minister Bathabile Dlamini deliberately failed the process.

"You've created lot of tension", Minister Bathabile Dlamini tells journalist

"You've created lot of tension", Minister Bathabile Dlamini tells journalist

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini said the media has been spreading wrong messages over social grants payments.

Minister Bathabile Dlamini to appear before Scopa over social grant payments

Minister Bathabile Dlamini to appear before Scopa over social grant payments

Social Development Minister is due to appear before Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on Tuesday.

SCOPA: Minister and others benefit from CPS/Sassa deal

SCOPA: Minister and others benefit from CPS/Sassa deal

Themba Godi, Scopa chair, has slammed widespread "incompetence" in the social grant payments saga.

Cosatu demands 'incompetent' Minister Bathabile Dlamini be fired

Cosatu demands 'incompetent' Minister Bathabile Dlamini be fired

Cosatu says Social Development Minister failed to find a new service provider to pay social grants and she is 'unfit' for office.

Minister wants to put Treasury in a tight corner, says DA

Minister wants to put Treasury in a tight corner, says DA

Scopa has summoned Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini to explain her plan to pay 17 million social grants.

Popular articles
Ramaphosa: 3 COVID-19 deaths recorded in SA, with 1,326 cases

Ramaphosa: 3 COVID-19 deaths recorded in SA, with 1,326 cases

In his address to the nation on Monday night, the president said the decision to place the country under lockdown was a difficult but necessary one to fight the spread of the virus.

'SA not going to have a recession, but a fundamental depression'

'SA not going to have a recession, but a fundamental depression'

Busa's Martin Kingston, Standard Bank Chief Economist Goolam Ballim and Rand Merchant Bank market strategist John Cairns weigh in.

Two elderly people die while queuing for grant payments - Sassa

Two elderly people die while queuing for grant payments - Sassa

An elderly woman is believed to have collapsed when she was confirmed dead outside a Pimville Post Office in Johannesburg.

Sassa grant recipients endure long queues to receive their payouts

Sassa grant recipients endure long queues to receive their payouts

Eyewitness News reporter Kevin Brandt says some recipients turned back on Monday, saying they would try again the next day.

Which farmers should benefit from emergency aid, and who will need it?

Which farmers should benefit from emergency aid, and who will need it?

Stellenbosch University professor of agricultural economics professor Johann Kirsten looks at who should benefit from this money.

[LISTEN] #Covid-19: Psychiatrist offers support service to healthcare workers

[LISTEN] #Covid-19: Psychiatrist offers support service to healthcare workers

Joanne Joseph spoke to psychiatrist Dr Claire Lownie about the pro-bono offering.

'Police shot at Vosloorus man in his veranda, unprovoked'

'Police shot at Vosloorus man in his veranda, unprovoked'

Eyewitness News reporter Theto Mahlakoane gives details of what the community members saw when the man was killed.

[LISTEN] Most people are suffering from 'corona panic syndrome' - expert

[LISTEN] Most people are suffering from 'corona panic syndrome' - expert

Wits University clinical pharmacologist Dr Mohamed Irhuma says people must spend less time on social media.

Business Partners Limited preparing to administer Rupert funding for SMEs

Business Partners Limited preparing to administer Rupert funding for SMEs

Gushwell Brooks speaks to business partner Ben Bierman about how these funds will be administered.

SABC disputes Bemawu's claim that the broadcaster concealed COVID-19 case

SABC disputes Bemawu's claim that the broadcaster concealed COVID-19 case

Bemawu has accused the SABC of endangering the lives of employees.