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LABOUR & PUBLIC ENTERPRISES SELECT COMMITTEE
9 November 1998
BROADCASTING BILL [B94B-98]: VOTING
Broadcasting Bill [B94D-98]
The committee voted on the Broadcasting Bill. It was agreed to without amendments. The National Party objected to the Bill.
The Director General of the Department on Communications, Mr Ngcaba, gave a background to the Bill. He said that the process had started in June of the previous year. Stakeholders, from every sector of broadcasting, had been involved in this process. They had formed a committee, lead by Prof. Njabulo Ndebele. Discussion papers had gone back and forth to this committee. This resulted in a Green Paper and then the White Paper on Broadcasting Policy. Many submissions had responded to both papers.
The Director General gave a brief history of broadcasting in South Africa. He then went to the Bill, as amended by the Portfolio Committee on Communications. He mentioned that the preamble repealed the Broadcasting Act, 1976. The Bill had paved the way for democratic principles and values. The definitions in the Bill were standard, international definitions. The Broadcasting System, in clause 3, was in line with international systems, but historically disadvantaged groups were focused on as well.
Stakeholders had emphasised the need for a charter, which appeared in Chapter 4. The SABC had to operated within this Charter.
Commercial and Public Services had been separated so that transparency could exist within each arm.
In chapter 5, the need to create an investment-friendly environment existed.
According to clause 37, research and development was needed in the Frequency Spectrum.
The Advisory Body's role was important for productions, in Clause 38. This body would be representative from the industry.
The Skills Development, under Chapter 10, was in line with the labour legislation. People would be developed in the electronic media.
The committee voted on the Bill. It was agreed to without amendments, with the National Party objecting to it.
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