Broadcasting Bill: discussion

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Communications and Digital Technologies

18 September 1998
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Meeting Summary

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Meeting report

18 September 1998


The Minister of Telecommunications, Jay Naidoo, addressed the committee. He said that the public submissions on the Broadcasting Bill have been perused by the department and out of that process proposed amendments have been made, which will be tabled in the committee meeting. Minister Naidoo said that he believed the legislation was a consultative one, which occurred over a period of 18 months. Various areas had to be considered. This included striking a balance between the different stakeholders and a redress of gender, race, culture, etc in our society. It also had to do with balancing investments with the needs of the broader public as well as the licensing process.

Regarding the independence of the SABC, Minister Naidoo said that there would be no political or commercial interference. He also said that corporate governance has been strengthened in the Broadcasting Bill.

Concerning digital conversions, Minister Naidoo said that it was an international problem. South Africa had to see how repositioning of it could take place. A public enquiry would be undertaken to clarify the regulatory factors surrounding this problem. The Minister emphasised that setting up the digital conversion was important as its objective was to empower people.

The Deputy Director General of the Communications Department, Mr Mjwara, went through all the proposed amendments verbally. No discussion surrounding the amendments were undertaken as some committee members had other meetings to attend. The Department was asked to put all the amendments onto paper and hand it out to the members as soon as possible, so that discussion could take place on Monday, 21 September 1998.




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