Last weekend police arrested five senior Sun employees – deputy editor, chief reporter, chief foreign correspondent, deputy news editor and picture editor – on charges of having bribed public officials for information. It is believed that the police were led to these individuals on the basis of being told who to target by News Corporation’s management and standards committee. The arrests have caused outrage, partly due to the perception that Murdoch is willing to sacrifice anyone at his newspapers to protect his media empire.
The journalists aren’t taking it lying down. They have now contacted the National Union of Journalists to investigate suing the News Corporation unit that disclosed confidential sources to the police. The row was stoked by the publication of a Times article by veteran human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson on Wednesday strongly criticising News Corp’s actions. “If journalists cannot promise anonymity to sources and keep that solemn promise, there would be a lot less news and what there was would be less reliable. So, on what basis can a journalist’s employer, without the journalist’s permission… squeal on them to the police?”
The NUJ is now investigating whether the journalists may be protected by the European Convention on Human Rights. The irony of this, as the Independent pointed out on Thursday, is that Sun journalists – including one of those arrested – have been consistently critical of the Human Rights Act. Apparently they don’t hate it so much when it stands between them and jail. DM
Photo: Former Sun staff are taking News Corp on. REUTERS.
Watch Pauli van Wyk’s Cat Play The Piano Here!
No, not really. But now that we have your attention, we wanted to tell you a little bit about what happened at SARS.
Tom Moyane and his cronies bequeathed South Africa with a R48-billion tax shortfall, as of February 2018. It's the only thing that grew under Moyane's tenure... the year before, the hole had been R30.7-billion. And to fund those shortfalls, you know who has to cough up? You - the South African taxpayer.
It was the sterling work of a team of investigative journalists, Scorpio’s Pauli van Wyk and Marianne Thamm along with our great friends at amaBhungane, that caused the SARS capturers to be finally flushed out of the system. Moyane, Makwakwa… the lot of them... gone.
But our job is not yet done. We need more readers to become Maverick Insiders, the friends who will help ensure that many more investigations will come. Contributions go directly towards growing our editorial team and ensuring that Daily Maverick and Scorpio have a sustainable future. We can’t rely on advertising and don't want to restrict access to only those who can afford a paywall subscription. Membership is about more than just contributing financially – it is about how we Defend Truth, together.
So, if you feel so inclined, and would like a way to support the cause, please join our community of Maverick Insiders.... you could view it as the opposite of a sin tax. And if you are already Maverick Insider, tell your mother, call a friend, whisper to your loved one, shout at your boss, write to a stranger, announce it on your social network. The battle for the future of South Africa is on, and you can be part of it.
The originator of the Big Bang Theory was a Catholic priest.