By BO Staff Writer
The Black First Land First (BLF) has won a case against the white owned News24 online publication, after it laid a charge with the Press Ombudsman, relating to the atrocious reporting by News24 on Chris Malikane’s statements regarding taking up arms for radical economic transformation.
Press ombudsman, Johan Retief, ruled that News24 should “apologise, unreservedly, to Malikane in particular and to the public in general, for misleadingly and unfairly creating the impression that Malikane favoured the taking up of arms to solve the land reform issue.”
Other publications which ran with the story, namely Sowetan and Citizen, have also been asked to amend their headline articles.
BLF president, Andile Mngxitama said the ruling was a victory.
“BLF is vindicated yet again that the white owned media has been running a propaganda campaign against Prof Malikane because of his well considered position on radical economic transformation,” he said.
“They can’t assail his arguments and so they resort to lying,” Mngxitama said.
Last month, BLF hosted a Blacks In Dialogue (BID) event where the Finance Minister’s advisor, Malikane, presented a paper on radical economic transformation. The following day, News24 wrote a report erroneously saying that Malikane had said he would pick up arms for radical economic transformation.
Retief classified News24’s offence as a Tier 3 breach, which is viewed as “serious misconduct”.
“The impression that Malikane favoured the taking up of arms to solve the land reform issue misrepresented him, and unnecessarily associated him with a position which, if taken to implementation, would have consequences too ghastly to contemplate,” Retief said.
Mngxitama said the Democratic Alliance (DA), which called for the firing of Malikane after the News24 story broke out, should also apologise to Malikane.
“BLF also calls on the racist DA which thrives on lies and slander, and all other racists who have abused the human rights commission, to apologise to Prof Malikane. BLF knows that the white owned media are manufacturers of fake news and their own ombudsman can’t protect them from their blatant lies,” he said.
“Today the real fake news has been exposed,” Mngxitama said jubilantly.
Read the full ruling of the press ombudsman below: