Opinion: We need to stand with journalists

The South African National Editors' Forum (Sanef) says it will file an interdict against Black First Land First (BLF) ahead of its planned protests.

The group has threatened to picket outside the homes of several journalists, namely Peter Bruce, Sam Sole, Adriaan Basson, Stephen Grootes, Max du Preez, Barry Bateman and Alec Hogg.

BLF have accused them of "covering up of white corruption under the guise of journalism".

Police Minister Fikile Mbalula has since condemned the protest outside Tiso Black Star editor Peter Bruce’s Johannesburg home last week, calling it invasive.

He says police will intervene and strike back hard against anyone targeting journalists or politicians.

Speaking on the matter, 702's Xolani Gwala says while the BLF has the right to raise issues about the media, no one should be allowed to make general accusations and threaten journalists.

Never in the history of post 1994 democracy have we seen such blatant threats to journalists freedom of speech and media freedom which is vital to this Constitution.

Xolani Gwala, 702 Breakfast Show anchor

It is important that all of us as society, we must stand up an defend people are being accused of doing their work.

Xolani Gwala, 702 Breakfast Show anchor

He insists that there are proper structures in place for the public to complain.

If you don't speak out for these journalists, there won't be anyone to speak for you so it is important as society we must rally behind and protect media freedom. That is not to say that there are no mistakes and that people do not sometimes become reckless but there are mechanisms that are there if people want to report, there is structured process through which you can complain like the BCCSA.

Xolani Gwala, 702 Breakfast Show anchor

Click on the link below to listen to the full audio....

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