So. On May 3, on World Press Freedom Day and 20 years on from the Windhoek Declaration, the editor-in-chief of Avusa refused to grant me access to information. Specifically, he has refused to grant my access to information application, where I requested access to a 2008 report about apparent gate-keeping failures at the Sunday Times, a newspaper title owned by Avusa.
I have written about this before for the Daily Maverick, and a follow-up should be published there in the next week. For now I have decided to make my application, and Makhanya’s response, open for public debate.
[Removed – will be reposted asap] – This document is almost exactly the same as the Paia application I submitted to Avusa on April 1. It is not the exact same document, since it does not have my signature and I made last minute final changes to the document submitted to them, which is now in their possession.
Refusal response from Avusa – This is the response I received from Avusa editor-in-chief, Mondli Makhanya, yesterday (May 3).
Please feel free to comment on the report, and also if you do write about this, please send me a link. I would like to hear everyone’s views regarding this debate on media transparency and openness in South Africa.