The SA National Editors' Forum has commended the Chief Justice Pius
Langa for his support for media freedom and the need for the media as
well as the judiciary to be independent institutions acting to preserve
the public's freedom of expression, according to a report on iol.co.za.
The forum also expresses its appreciation of Justice Langa's recognition of the importance of the media's self regulatory mechanisms set up under the Press Council to address public complaints against the print media and the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of SA to deal with the electronic media.
Langa, who was speaking at a breakfast meeting at the Durban University of Technology on March 30, said the courts recognised and applauded the media's self-regulatory measures though he noted that the judiciary "has also to discipline it within the acceptable bounds of freedom".
He also pointed out that freedom of expression was not designed to benefit the media but to benefit the people and if the media "were hamstrung, left, right and centre" it would be the people who "would be the poorer".
Sanef has noted that Justice Langa referred to the vital role of both the judiciary and the media in ensuring that "freedom for all" did not remain an "illusion" and emphasised that the two institutions shared a "symbiotic relationship" and had to support each other though remaining completely independent of each other.