Posts Tagged ‘freedom of expression’

Media Freedom and Breaking the news

19/10/2018

The media in South Africa commemorates the 41st anniversary of the infamous “Black Wednesday” which happened on the 19 October 1977, The World and Weekend World newspapers and several organisations were banned.

We think this day is a good time to reflect on the state of journalism in the country in 2018, especially in light of the recent scandal that has rocked a Sunday newspaper.

We have come a long way to media freedom in this country. Being Africa’s oldest community radio station project, which at one stage faced the full wrath of the apartheid government, we feel it is our duty and responsibility to promote accurate and fair reporting.

Bush Radio does not have the resources to be a “breaking news” station, but it is our duty to be accurate and give our listeners an opportunity to make up their own minds. This however can only happen if we present all sides of any argument, through good research and having access to role-players like politicians on a local, provincial and national level – this is proving harder and harder as officials simply refuse to comment or respond to questions from our newsroom and producers.

We call on all role-players who have an interest in improving the lives of the people on the Cape Flats to be accessible, especially to community media who truly speak and represent the people of Cape Town. It is only by engaging on the hard questions that we can truly claim to be improving the lives of citizens – and being a platform where people and audience can engage with political and social leaders. Thereby learning, healing and growing this wonderful city.

As a place where many young journalists start in their careers, we call upon our audience to hold us accountable and engage with us around our reporting and broadcasts.

Background on Black Wednesday:

On this day in 1977 in South Africa, then Minister of Justice Jimmy Kruger, banned The World and Weekend World newspapers by stating that these publications were “publishing inflammatory material that threatened the nation’s security” and the paper’s editor Percy Qoboza and other journalists were arrested and jailed.

19 organisations were also banned and apartheid critics were detained.

The organisations banned were BPC, SASO, Black Community Programmes, Black Parents Association, Black Women’s Federation, Border Youth Organisation, Eastern Province Youth Organisation, Medupe Writers Association, Natal Youth Organisation, National Youth Organisation, SASM, Soweto Students Representative Council, Soweto Teachers Action Committee, Transvaal Youth Organisation, Union of Black Journalists, Western Cape Youth Organisation, Zimele Trust Fund, Association for the Educational and Cultural Advancement of African People of South Africa.

Banning orders were also served on Beyers Naude and journalist Donald Woods.

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Keeping Bush Radio On Air – Brenda, Adrian Shortlisted for #NatNakasaAwards

21/06/2018
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Brenda Leonard and Adrian Louw

By Emma Derr

A few weeks ago, Bush Radio Managing Director Brenda Leonard and Programme Integrator Adrian Louw were nominated for the esteemed Nat Nakasa Award – and it’s just been announced that they made the 2018 shortlist!

The award is named after South African journalist Nat Nakasa, and is given to individuals who show exceptional integrity and courage in their work.

Nakasa embodied fearless journalism at a time – the 1960s – when media was anything but free. During a period when black voices were rarely printed or heard in the news, Nakasa was one of the most important and influential anti-apartheid reporters.

Read more on Nat Nakasa

The award is awarded annually by the SA National Editors’ Forum (SANEF), Print Media SA and the Neiman Society.

SANEF says that those who are nominated must have “shown integrity and reported fearlessly and tenaciously striven to maintain a publication or other medium despite insurmountable obstacles”, as well as resisted censorship and displayed commitment to serving the South African people.
sanef tweetShe began working at Bush Radio in 1993 and says that the biggest accomplishment of her career is ensuring that Bush Radio is on air and legal at all times.

Nat Nakasa was often called a brave journalist, and Leonard says South Africa still needs people like this, even in the post-apartheid era, because journalists can expose corruption and educate.

“Even when there were threats to our sustainability, Bush Radio is important historically and currently influential,” Leonard said.

She said that Bush Radio has shaped the establishment and legislation of the Media Development Diversity Agency, which was created by an Act of Parliament to help disadvantaged communities who lack access to media.

Louw says, while Brenda Leonard keeps the organization running, he is responsible for programming, staffing, and mentoring.

He says his favorite part of the job is creating a safe space for young people to develop and become courageous journalists.

“The experience people have here changes lives and that’s the joy of being a part of an organization like Bush Radio,” Louw said.

He said that through his career, he has witnessed Bush Radio at the forefront of developing and defending the community sector of radio in the country. He said he considers Bush Radio one of the last “truly independent voices for the community”.

“I think we create hope in people about what’s possible,” Louw said. “We only rise when the lowest of us rise, and Bush Radio has and always will rise with the people we serve in the community. This is my small contribution to making South Africa better.”

The winner of the Nat Nakasa Award will be announced on Saturday, June 23 at Randlords in Braamfontein, Johannesburg*.

* Brenda and Adrian have asked a former Bush Radio staff member (now based in Johannesburg) to represent the station at the awards dinner.

Related:

BBC: Nat Nakasa reburial: South African writer’s remains return

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Is the news important to you? #worldpressfreedomday #pressfreedom #WPFD18

03/05/2018

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The 3rd of May is World Press Freedom day.

We asked some of our listeners if news is important to them.

Join the conversation! Send us more comments on sms 32158 / whatsapp 0832973910 / Instagram / Twitter#worldpressfreedomday #pressfreedom

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Support World Press Freedom Day 2017 #pressfreedom #WPFD2017

02/05/2017

“A critical, independent and investigative press is the lifeblood of any democracy. The press must be free from state interference. It must have the economic strength to stand up to the blandishments of government officials. It must have sufficient independence from vested interests to be bold and inquiring without fear or favour. It must enjoy the protection of the constitution, so that it can protect our rights as citizens.” – Nelson Mandela on freedom of expression, at the International Press Institute congress (14 February 1994)

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Essa Moosa – Always ready to fight the good fight

26/02/2017


We are saddened by the loss of Judge Essa Moosa who had served as Bush Radio trustee and mentor at the formal establishment of the station in the early 1990s. Judge Moosa helped ensure that Bush Radio became the pioneering community radio station it is today and that the voice of all communities are heard.

Even though Judge Moosa was no longer a trustee of the station, he followed developments in the media and the station closely, and was a regular on-air guest to highlight the challenges faced by the Kurds through his work with the Kurdish Human Rights Action Group.

His lessons of dignity, self-pride, searching for knowledge and fighting for the rights of all are values we cherish and strive to maintain and pass on to all the young people who are now part of the station.

The above clip is from the Bush Radio documentary Partial Eclipse. Judge Essa Moosa confronts officials from the apartheid regime Post Office, police and security Special Branch as they raid Bush Radio offices in 1993 to confiscate and charge members of the station for broadcasting illegally.

Judge Essa Moosa passed away in Cape Town on February 26, 2017.

We salute you

A brief biography of Essa Moosa*

Judge Essa Moosa was born on 8 February 1936 in District Six, Cape Town. He qualified as an Attorney-at Law and was admitted to practice by the High Court of the Supreme Court, Cape Town on 1 June 1962. He practised as an Attorney in Cape Town until December 1997 and in 1998 was appointed as a judge of the High Court of the Supreme Court in Cape Town, officially retiring on 8 February 2011. He has six siblings, is married and continues to live in Cape Town.

Specialising in human rights issues for almost 40 years, he challenged, in court violations of basic human rights such as detention without trial, freedom of expression, freedom of movement, security and emergency legislations and regulations. During this time he acted for a number of prominent non-governmental organisations, community based organisations, leading political and community activists. In 2012 the University of the Western Cape conferred an Honorary Doctorate in law on him in recognition of his contribution in the field of human rights.

He was a founding and executive member of the National Association of Democratic Lawyers and chaired its Human Rights Committee. He was a member of the Constitutional Committee of the African National Congress (ANC), which gave logistical support to the ANC negotiation team for the establishment of a democratic, non-racial and non-sexist South Africa. He also served as the Provincial Election Agent for the ANC in the region of the Western Cape for the first democratic elections in April 1994.

In addition he serves in a voluntary position as trustee of the University of the Western Cape, a position he has held for more than 20 years. He has also served as the Chairperson of the Council of the Peninsula Technicon and later as a member of the Council until the merger of the institute with the Cape Technicon. He was a founding member and trustee of the community based media initiatives including; Bush Radio, Grassroots Publications, Saamstaan Newspaper (Southern Cape) and South Newspaper.

*Source: International Peace and Reconciliation Initiative

Related:

Hamba Kahle Vincent Kolbe

Johnny Issel: Everything that was noble in the Struggle

Bush Radio mourns, Professor William T. McClain (1923-2011)

Listen to your heart – remembering Zane Ibrahim

Support World Press Freedom Day 2015

03/05/2015

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The 14th Media Kidocracy kicks off #MKK2014

06/10/2014

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This year the 14th Media Kidocracy (kid+democracy) Konfrence which runs from th 6th to the 10th October 2014, is taking place in a historic year for media in South Africa. Bush Radio is celebrating 21 years since its first illegal broadcast, and 19 years of legal broadcasting. The National Community Radio Forum (NCRF) is also celebrating 21 years of existence, Bush Radio played a pivotal role in the establishment of the NCRF.

As South Africans, we are celebrating 20 years of democracy, as a country we are slowly emerging from a violent apartheid past to a nation celebrating its freedom.

The theme for MKK2014 is “Celebrating 20 years of democracy: learning from the past and celebrating the future.”

One of the foundations of this democracy we have built is freedom of expression.

This right allows everyone, including youth, to express themselves, whether this is verbally, artistically, scientifically or in any other way. However, this right does not come without responsibilities and we need to look at how we use our hard fought for freedom.

Freedom of expression is entrenched in the Media Kidocracy Konfrence as it allows participants to express the issues they raise through their media productions.

Bush Radio would like to thank the support of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FESmediaAfrica), the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA), the Children’s Movement, and Whale Coast FM.

* Several of Bush Radio’s programmes will be broadcasting live from the event, these are: The Breakfast Rush (6-9am), The Morning Cruise (9am – 12pm), Sakhisizwe (12 – 2pm) and Everyday People (4 – 7pm).

** MKK2014 takes places at Wortelgat situated on the blanks of the Kleinriver estuary so besides the intensive media programme and discussion sessions participants will also enjoy the picturesque fynbos as well as archery, abseiling, and hiking.

Check out previous MKK posts – CLICK HERE

I write what I like #zamediafreedom #biko

12/09/2013

iwritewhatilike

originally published 10/09/2010

Related:

Donald Woods on Bush Radio (CLICK TO LISTEN)

Open letter on Media Freedom & Freedom of Expression

From pirate to pioneer (Bush Radio’s illegal broadcast 20 years later)

25/04/2013

your voice

two appear in court over community radio

Today marks the 20th anniversary of Bush Radio‘s illegal broadcast (25 April 1993) which forced the issue of community broadcasting onto the legislative agenda in South Africa and paved the way for the airwaves to be opened and the development of a vibrant community radio sector.

Within days of the broadcast, authorities (police, members of the security branch and post office officials) seized the station’s equipment and arrested two staff members. Following intense local and international lobbying efforts, however, the case was dismissed and Bush Radio was granted a broadcast license on 1 August 1995.

let the people speak

Related:

Read more about Bush Radio – CLICK HERE

Open letter on Media Freedom & Freedom of Expression

Cops delete Bush Radio journo’s photos

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Camping it up at Parliament

22/11/2012

Yesterday as part of our regular Wednesday staff development session, Bush Radio members went to Parliament to check out the Right2Know’s Camp-Out for Openess and take part in the teach-in that was running at that time.