There are good things on radio and TV

SOUTH Africa is no good at giving praise. We can criticise, that's for sure. I'm one of the best at that. But when it comes to giving due praise we often falter. The inability to give praise, I believe, is proportionate to the failure to engender success.

So today I want to give praise in the areas I am most passionate about - radio and television broadcasting.

I caught the television show Maggs On Media the other night. I was reminded of one of the best presenters this country has ever witnessed in action.

I have seen Who wants to be a millionaire with other international presenters at the helm, but Jeremy Maggs is still the best I have seen doing it.

When I switched on to eNews Africa I was just channel hopping.

I was not going to stay there long but up popped Maggs presenting Maggs On Media.

I instantly remembered how I loved listening to him on SAfm's Sunday morning media programme some years back.

His hair is a lot grayer now and he is a lot heftier, but I could not change channels until he was done. In any economically advanced country he would be a Larry King with the money and international fame that goes with it.

His is truly a magnificent show. He does his research, he listens, he asks intelligent questions and he is entertaining.

His is the level of television presentation that all presenters should aim to emulate and surpass.

On Saturdays I will single out African Connection with Richard Mwamba on SAfm. The selection of music on that show is phenomenal. The information behind the music is superb and Richard Mwamba presents it all with a voice that is totally suited to the show - soothing and kind.

But it is the understated passion and joy that he brings to his presentation style that truly moves me to love that show.

It is a miracle that he has survived for so long because SAfm specialises in strangling its best programmes to death.

On Wednesdays you have to catch Jenny Cryws-Williams' Advertising Feature with Andy Rice. It's a knowledgeable show about advertising and marketing that truly entertains.

But Cryws-Williams' Tuesday Interview takes the cake. I'll never forget listening to her interviewing Jake White, the former Springbok coach, after he had won the 2007 Rugby World Cup and been fired.

I cried. This was a hell of a long way from the day I heard her present what I still perceive to be the most disrespectful interview I ever heard the then Archbishop Desmond Tutu answer to in his entire life.

Today we have in Cryws-Williams one of the most thoughtful, knowledgeable, balanced and incisive interviewers in the history of our radio. She's the gold standard.

So there are good things too in our broadcast media. Now, if we know what's good, what's so hard about multiplying it?

One phrase inevitably comes to mind: corrupt managers with no concern for excellence.

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