Media Release 19th September 2010

Moderators: GenMod, AfrMod

Media Release 19th September 2010

Postby GOSA » Sun, 2010-09-19 15:36

Media Release 19th September 2010

Media protest against government's latest censorship proposals will be supported by those citizens who understand the need for a free press. But it is hypocritical to object to government censorship when media bias already amounts to de facto censorship. The public wants free and honest reporting, and if we are to be enslaved by censorship, it makes little difference who imposes it.

On 4th September ETV reported the destruction of firearms by SAPS. It reported only what ETV had been told by SAPS, and made no mention of the background detail that has so adversely affected firearm owners.

E News anchor Scheherazade Safla and reporter Dianne Hawker reported that the 11 000 firearms destroyed by SAPS brought the total to 40 000 destroyed in the Western Cape this year. Hawker said that most of the firearms had been voluntarily handed in by their owners.

No mention was made of the intimidation by the SAPS of the firearm owners who surrendered those guns. It included threats of 15 years jail made by SAPS spokespersons - using the media - against those who refused to relicence their firearms. GOSA received feedback that many firearm owners believed that they would be jailed if they did not surrender their firearms.

Hawker did not mention that several prima facie constitutional violations in the Firearm Control Act may yet be tested in Constitutional Court, or that two important court decisions against SAPS have already been handed down. The first was the interdict by the North Gauteng High Court which had the effect of declaring all licences valid until further notice, and thus removing the need for relicencing.

The other was the order by the Cape High Court compelling the minister to honour the compensation clause of the Firearm Control Act that provides for compensation for surrendered firearms. Despite that decision, not one cent of compensation has been paid, in clear contempt of court, and not one firearm should have been accepted for destruction before the compensation issue was settled.

SAPS is thus guilty of violation of the Constitution and firearm owners' constitutional rights to further the ANC's gun control agenda. They have met the definitional elements of fraud, and even intimidation as defined by Section 1A (1) of the Intimidation Act. They have seriously endangered the rule of law in the Republic and have tried to subvert the whole constitutional order.

Is that not the real story, worthy of broadcasting? Obviously ETV's reporters don't think so, and prefer to regurgitate what they are told by SAPS. Whatever the reason, ETV has failed to report this important issue fully, accurately and fairly, and has thus failed in its duty as public watchdog.

Freedom is indivisible. Sacrificing some civil rights will make it more difficult to defend others. Media support for the unconstitutional Firearms Control Act will cost it the support of firearm owners in its battle against further censorship.

The wheel has a way of turning full circle.

Dick Boothroyd
GOSA Exec.
What have YOU done for YOUR rights today?
Site Admin
Posts: 1598
Joined: Sun, 2006-01-29 15:42
Location: South Africa

Return to GOSA Press Releases

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest