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Latest BCCSA Cases

Posted by radio On July - 5 - 2012


CASE NUMBER: 30/2012









Respondent: Mr Bruce Mkhize, Regulatory Compliance Manager, Regulatory Affairs.


Complaint that a word denoting non-believers and people who are ignorant of the Qu’ran, in particular, is derogatory and constitutes hate speech. The Tribunal held that the term cannot be construed as hate speech as there was no advocacy of hatred based on religion, and no incitement to cause harm, the two requirements for the finding of a hate speech contravention. Furthermore, this was a bona fide religious broadcast in which a discussion on a matter pertaining to religion occurred, and so there was no contravention of the Code, and the complaint was not upheld. Baboo vs Multichoice CII Radio.

Read the full judgement here:


2.      CASE NO – 31-2012 – 94.7 HIGHVELD STEREO – NEWS – CHILDREN


CASE NUMBER: 31/2012









For the Complainant: The Complainant was invited but did not attend.

For the Respondent: Khahliso Mochaba: Group Human Capital and Regulatory Affairs Executive, Primedia Broadcasting.

The complaint concerned a news item concerning the ten-minute-long mobile phone footage of an incident where seven boys aged between 14 and 18 years raped a mentally-challenged girl aged 17. Part of the footage contained the rapists’ dialogue, and the voice of the girl was also audible. The news item conveyed that the footage had gone “viral” in Soweto. Although the Tribunal noted that the broadcaster had warned sensitive viewers of the content of the news item, the Tribunal held that clues as to the identity of the girl had, indirectly, been given, which is in conflict with the Code. The Tribunal also stated the following as a future guideline to broadcasters: The footage, which includes the audio soundtrack, probably amounts to child pornography, which in terms of the Films and Publications Act 1996 may not be possessed or distributed. Distribution would include distribution of the footage in its entirety, as well as the visuals and/or the audio soundtrack individually, by way of the electronic media, which includes mobile phones. Since this aspect was not pursued during the hearing of this matter, the Tribunal will not spend further time on the question as to whether the Respondent was promoting the distribution of the mobile phone footage, which would amount to a contravention of clause 3(b) of the Broadcasting Code. However, it is worthwhile to at least mention this possibility, as a guideline to broadcasters which fall within our jurisdiction. Of course, the mere coverage of a crime does not amount to such a promotion. However, where children are protected by criminal law, the mere mention of the availability of child pornography on mobile phones in a specific case, might amount to the promotion of a crime. Since the indirect identification of victims of sex crimes has never been the subject of a judgment of this Commission, the Tribunal decided not to consider a heavier sanction (e.g. a fine), and to restrict the sanction to a reprimand. However, such a contravention will, in future, probably lead to a stricter approach. The Complaint is upheld and the Respondent reprimanded for a contravention of clause 11(7) of the Code.  Stevens vs 94.7 Highveld Stereo.

Read the full judgment here:




CASE NUMBER: 25/2012










For the Complainants: The Complainants were invited but did not attend.

For the Respondent: Mr JD Crawford, Legal Representative, accompanied by Mr

Neil Johnson: Jacaranda Programme Manager.


The complaint before the Tribunal was that a presenter from the respondent had, during a broadcast, referred to an Alberton School rugby team as “gomgatte”, which amounts to calling them “country bumpkins” or loutish. The Tribunal held: That the accusation was directed at a schoolboy who had head-butted an opponent during a rugby game and was sent off by the referee. When the referee attempted to obtain the schoolboy’s name after the match, the latter head-butted the referee. This schoolboy, according to the broadcast, was from a school outside the Alberton area. That the reference by the presenter indicating that one might have expected such conduct from a schoolboy in Alberton, served to debunk any possible stereotype that this kind of conduct is specific to Alberton. That, in effect, the statement was not defamatory, but served to show that hooligans may be found anywhere. The complaint was, accordingly, not upheld.  Botha and Hoërskool Alberton vs Jacaranda 94.2FM.

Read the full judgment here:




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