The DA says this is an important victory, which they hope will dissuade the public broadcaster from attempting to censor opposition political parties again.
Phumzile van Damme, the DA’s National Spokesperson and Shadow Minister of Communications, says given that the SABC has agreed to air the DA’s election adverts, they have now placed the party’s complaint with ICASA on hold.” This does not mean the complaint has been dropped completely, and should the SABC use any other means to delay the airing of the advert, we will revive the complaint immediately.”
The DA argued that they had every right to have their adverts aired as soon as the local government election was proclaimed. This is in terms of ICASA regulations. This was confirmed in the media by ICASA on several occasions.
The SABC’s excuses were shown up for what they always were: poor attempts to delay the adverts. Excuses ranging from their search for political party slots (not required for paid advertisements), to determining bizarrely if we were in fact a political party at all, demonstrated their desperation to block us at every turn.
“Nevertheless, we are pleased that the SABC has capitulated and that our election adverts will be aired. We want this to happen as soon as possible, and we will be closely monitoring its progress.
“We reiterate again that should the adverts be delayed any further we reserve our rights to revive our complaint with ICASA. We will not stand by and allow censorship to prevent South Africans from hearing our offer of change. This is the change that will stop corruption, deliver better services and create jobs,” says the DA.