ACCOUNTABILITY AT THE HEART OF TRUST
Article by: Dumisane Dube
The National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) has called for TV personality Somizi Mhlongo to apologize for insulting City Press Journalists, Kabelo Khumalo, and Julia Madibogo.
Somizi was approached by Julia Madibogo of City Press for comments on allegations of infidelity and divorce between him and his partner Mohale Motaung-Mhlongo.
Mhlongo took to his Instagram page and insulted the journalists also exposing their names and cell phone numbers to his 3.7 million followers, and his followers allegedly harassed the journalists.
The forum stated that instead of responding to the questions, Mhlongo decided to insult Khumalo and his parents, calling them obscene names and abused Madibogo.
In a statement SANEF said: ‘We believe this is irresponsible in the extreme and potentially unlawful conduct. Mhlongo has a massive support base and a following in excess of almost 4-million on the Instagram social platform and his followers have resorted to intimidation and harassment of journalists on all social media platforms. They have subjected both Madibogo and Khumalo to torrents of insults and threats.’
Mhlongo deleted the posts from his Instagram page.
‘His actions have aggravated what is already a hostile working environment, especially for women journalists. This is a direct attack on media freedom in the country.’ added SANEF
The forum said the City Press journalists must a lay charges of intimidation and MultiChoice must officially distance themselves from Mhlongo’s comments.
SANEF also stated that Somizi must call on his followers to stop harassing and intimidating the journalists.
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