Apology to Ms Verashni Pillay

It has been drawn to our attention that a photograph in our 2018 State of the Newsroom report, published in June 2019, suggests a link between former editor Verashni Pillay and controversy around the Huffington Post’s treatment of claims levelled against some journalists as being part of Stratcom. Our intention was not to make such a connection, but we accept that this implication can be drawn from the context. We are aware that these events took place some time after Ms Pillay left the publication, and apologise unreservedly to her for any embarrassment caused. The online version of the report has been changed.

(Note: The change and an apology was made immediately the matter was brought to our attention in June 2019 (and can be viewed here). Ms Pillay nevertheless laid a complaint with the SA Press Council, which ruled on the matter on March 16, 2020. It found that the use of the image had breached the Press Code. It found the apology adequately worded, but ordered that it should be more prominently placed. The full ruling is available here.)

Adj Prof Franz Krüger
HoD: Wits Journalism