How is a party that physically attacks and harass women allowed to be part of constitutional democracy – a party that encourages its supporters to make rape and sexual assault threats? That is the question that we need to ask the IEC.
” EFF Supporters began a barrage of insults against journalist Karima Brown – calling her among other derogatory names ‘an Indian whore and bitch’ and levelling insults, threatening her life, and accusing her of allegedly sending moles to spy on them”
Primedia Broadcasting, the owner of Talk Radio 702, has expressed outrage at the “vicious personal attacks” on veteran journalist Karima Brown by EFF supporters.
This follows rape and other threats against Brown, allegedly by EFF supporters, as a result of a message she posted on the EFF’s WhatsApp group. Brown mistakenly posted an editorial brief meant for journalists, regarding a story about the EFF’s “Breakfast with the elderly” function.
In response, EFF leader Julius Malema tweeted a screenshot of her message with her cellphone number
The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on Wednesday stepped up its invective against veteran journalist Karima Brown, saying she held no position in the profession after it was widely criticised for accusing her of spying on a campaign meeting.
On Wednesday, the South African National Editors Forum (Sanef) condemned the EFF’s attacks on Brown and said this was not the first time that women had been attacked by the party’s supporters. Sanef has approached the Equality Court in its efforts to stop the EFF’s attacks on journalists, especially women.
In a statement on Wednesday, Primedia also condemned the EFF’s attacks on Brown. Brown hosts The Karima Brown Show on 702. The station is owned by Primedia.
“Primedia Broadcasting is appalled at the vicious personal attacks against one of its presenters, Karima Brown. 702 has always stood for open debate and the contestation of ideas. We fiercely guard and protect our presenters’ and callers’ right to freedom of expression as protected in the Constitution and as a signatory to the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa’s (BCCSA) code of Conduct. It is something that we, as 702, will defend.
“The spate of recent attacks on media professionals is not only detestable, it also places undue pressure on those working in the media,” the company said in a statement.
It added that, the “threats” were being viewed “in a serious light”, especially in the “highly charged environment ahead of the forthcoming elections”.
“These threats are being viewed in a serious light as well as being regarded as inflammatory and as a threat to Karima’s safety.”
COO of Primedia Broadcasting Karl Gostner said: “We appeal for the threats against Karima to stop. It inhibits her and other journalists from doing their work. Attacks of this nature, are a threat to our democratic space.”
This is a clear example of the attack on media freedom “We call on Julius Malema and the entire EFF leadership to apologise to Karima Brown,” Sanef said.
The EFF on Wednesday also released a statement on the matter, defending its actions. It said it has long considered Brown an openly admitted ANC operative and not a journalist.
“We call on the EFF leadership to stop with this vicious attack on the media and allow journalists to do their work without fear and intimidation. The attacks on women in media in particular and the abuse levelled against them is contrary to the spirit of wanting to protect women in a country where violence against women has reached pandemic levels,” Sanef said.
Journalist Karima Brown on Wednesday said she would lay complaints with the police and the Electoral Commission (IEC) against the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) after Julius Malema sparked an outpouring of abuse against her from his supporters.
“I am going to lay an official complaint at the IEC. And the police,” Brown said.
She suggested the EFF was in breach of the Electoral Code of Conduct, enshrined in the Electoral Act, which barred registered parties from using language that could provoke violence and enjoined them to respect the role of the media before, during and after elections.