06 February 2019
Mayor Committed To Working with the Media
EThekwini Mayor Councillor Zandile Gumede has been inundated with calls from leaders and members of different political parties seeking clarity following unverified reports alleging that she ordered Metro Police to prevent journalists from covering a press briefing convened by the Democratic Alliance.
From the outset, we wish to assure the people of South Africa that Mayor Gumede has reiterated her commitment towards working with the members of the media to inform the public at large about the socio-economic and political developments in eThekwini Municipality. The Mayor and the Municipality view members of the fourth estate as an important cog in the wheel of democracy.
Mayor Gumede further affirms her commitment to defend freedom of expression and to ensure that this freedom which was fought for by many is enjoyed by all. Critically, we wish to reject reports that the Mayor instructed Metro Police to mishandle and eject members of the media out of the Durban City Hall.
For the record, the Mayor was not aware of the DA press briefing until she received calls and text messages from ANC leadership and other leaders of political parties. Therefore, reports linking her to the commotion are untrue and are based on false statements and not facts.
To this end, Mayor Gumede has ordered an investigation to establish circumstances surrounding this incident. The report of the investigation will be shared amongst leaders of political parties in the Municipality, members of the media and the public at large.
Since her deployment in August 2016, Mayor Gumede has cultivated good relations with the majority of media houses. It is for these reasons that her ultimate goal is to remove all obstacles that may stand between the Durban City Hall and members of the fourth estate.
Issued by Mayor’s Office, Durban City Hall – for more information, kindly contact Mayoral Spokesperson – Mthunzi Gumede on 071 412 7701.
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