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
Journalist explores what could go wrong with the new street cameras in Joburg

Journalist explores what could go wrong with the new street cameras in Joburg

Daily Maverick's contributor Heidi Swart says service providers that install surveillance monitors need to be responsible.

[WATCH] Mabena's lack of agility has social media in stitches, we are Mabena!

[WATCH] Mabena's lack of agility has social media in stitches, we are Mabena!

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

[WATCH] Local six-year-old dancing sensation's video goes viral

[WATCH] Local six-year-old dancing sensation's video goes viral

After Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith shared the video of Ivanah Campbell dancing it has been viewed over 10 million times.

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

Magda Wierzycka – Sygnia’s renegade CEO – on her attitude toward money (hopes and fears, successes and failures, etc.).

Tips on how to handle bad sex

Tips on how to handle bad sex

Clinical sexologist Dr Eve advises how to deal with bad sex and how to properly communicate when displeased.

Meet Sandile Shabalala, CEO of black-owned and controlled TymeBank

Meet Sandile Shabalala, CEO of black-owned and controlled TymeBank

TymeBank has no branches and no monthly fees. Most transactions are free. Bruce Whitfield interviews its CEO.