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Editors body asks ethics committee to make Mantashe account for claims about bribing journalists

Mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe
Mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe
Image: Russell Roberts

The South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) has called upon the Parliamentary Ethics Committee to hold minister of mineral resources and energy Gwede Mantashe accountable for comments he made about bribing journalists.

Mantashe was embroiled in a scandalous expose published by Sunday World newspaper, when the paper called him for comment he alluded to bribing journalist of from the publication. He has since retracted his statement but is yet to apologise for the comments.

Sanef has released a statement  commenting on the seriousness of the utterances and is looking for an apology from the minister.

"This is an extremely serious matter for Sanef, and we will continue to seek answers. As a result, we have now also written to the Parliamentary Ethics Committee asking the Committee to hold a hearing into the matter," said Sanef in a statement. 

"Finally, Sanef has followed up with members of Judge Satchwell’s independent Media Ethics and Credibility Inquiry. The panellists have confirmed that they will be approaching Minister Mantashe to make a submission.

"Sanef believes that as a minimum an apology is required - to the journalists at the Sunday World, the Sunday World itself, all journalists whose reputations have been tarnished as a result of his claims, and the South African public as a whole."

The editors'  body reiterated its stance on "brown envelope journalism" denouncing it as a scourge and called upon members of the public to report any unethical behaviour to the Satchwell Media Ethics and Credibility Inquiry.

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