The African National Congress (ANC) has proposed drastically reducing
the SABCÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s reliance on advertising by raising the stateÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s contribution
to the public broadcasterÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s revenue to a mammoth 60% annually by 2010,Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â writes Thom Maclachlan in Business Day.
According to a document outlining the ANCÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s media policy for the next five years ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â as adopted at the partyÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s 52nd conference in Polokwane last month ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â the stateÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s contribution should rise to a minimum of 60%, from 2% now.
The party said that the mediaÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s reliance on advertising revenue had a negative effect on society. It also said the SABC played a crucial role in promoting a developmental state.
The funding proposal could further fuel concerns about the SABCÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s independence. The broadcaster has been accused of pro-ANC political bias.
The SABC has sought an increase in government funding for some time, to curb its reliance on commercial income.
While SABC CE Dali Mpofu welcomed the proposed increase, he warned that it was important to ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œstrike a balanceÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â between state funding, advertising and licence fees.
Click here to read the full report, posted on Business Day's website.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â