Campaigning on SBIS barred
MBABANE – Parliamentarians have been barred from using the Swaziland Broadcasting and Information Services as a campaigning forum.
This was said by Bhekithemba Gama, the SBIS acting Director, in an interview yesterday.
Gama, whose substantive position is that of Undersecretary in the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology, said last month he issued a reminder to some of the programme hosts to follow the procedure when hosting politicians, including aspiring MPs.
"One of the procedures is that no individuals, groups or organisations will be allowed to campaign using the station," he stated.
The acting SBIS chief said, in as much as he understood that the 2012 general elections were around the corner, it was not yet the opportune time for campaigning.
He advised those keen on discussing certain matters touching on the constituencies to ‘touch base’ with the Ministry of Tinkhundla Administration and Development. Gama stressed that the national broadcaster was also not a ‘battlefield’ for individuals to attack each other willy-nilly.
"We expect people who want to be featured in the programmes to look at the obtaining scenario on the ground and thus form an opinion for discussion," he further stated.
Gama said there was a vast distinction between tackling a topical national issue and campaigning.
Prince Gija, the Chairman of the Elections and Boundaries Commission, last month sternly warned that it was not yet time for aspiring politicians to start campaigning.
Dlamini, who is also the Chief of Nkamanzi, said campaigning was strictly prohibited at the moment.
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