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DA says ANC will benefit from Icasa ad delay

Sapa

Following the SABC pulling its TV ad, the DA says it is concerned about its election campaign as Icasa has taken over 48 hours to hear its complaint.

DA Gauteng premier candidate Mmusi Maimane. (Oupa Nkosi, M&G)

Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) took more than 48 hours to hear a Democratic Alliance (DA) complaint against the SABC over the pulling of an election advert, DA MP James Selfe said on Monday.

"The DA is extremely concerned that the 48-hour timeline set by Icasa's regulations has been ignored in this case, and that the hearing will now only occur in three days' time," he said in a statement. "The DA's election campaign will be prejudiced as a result, and the ANC's will be advantaged."

He said the DA received a letter from Icasa informing it that a hearing into the matter was postponed because the authority was not able to quorate on Tuesday. Icasa said it would hold the public hearing on Thursday.

Selfe said the DA's legal team wrote a letter to Icasa on Monday afternoon asking it to deliver its decision on the complaint no later than 5pm on Thursday and that there be no further delays.

The DA laid a complaint on Saturday, and the SABC responded to it on Sunday night, after the broadcaster pulled the party's "Ayisafani" advert last week.

'An ANC that is corrupt'
The public broadcaster informed the party that the corporation would not be able to broadcast the advert on radio and television as it incited violence.

The advert in question shows the DA's Gauteng premier candidate and spokesperson, Mmusi Maimane, standing in front of a mirror talking about the current state of the country.

He says life today is better than it was 20 years ago and gives credit to great leaders who he believes have taken the country forward.

"But since 2008, we've seen President Jacob Zuma's ANC. An ANC that is corrupt. An ANC for the connected few. An ANC that is taking us backwards. An ANC where more than 1.4-million people have lost jobs."

Maimane then asks Zuma where the jobs are.

He continues to speak about news events such as police brutality and the R246-million upgrade to Zuma's private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal.

The advert ends with Maimane saying: "Together we can bring hope, allow an environment that creates jobs. Together we can bring change for all South Africans." – Sapa

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