The media factionalised an honest debate: iLIVE
The team of Dominic Mahlangu, Thabo Mokone Caiphus Kgosana and Chandré Prince reported on deliberations at the ANC policy conference, in the commission on the second transition, allegedly basing their report, ("Delegates reject Zuma plan", June 28), on off-the-record briefings from some delegates .
Without confirming it with me, the team quoted what their sources claimed I had said - among other things, that "we should not be obsessed with achievements that have been made in the delivery of RDP houses, electricity and basic services such as water".
I wish to state categorically that I said no such thing.
Besides the fact of the strange logic in this statement, the article follows the template of current media discourse to factionalise an honest debate on substantive issues.
I had chosen to ignore The Times' hatchet job until I saw a regurgitation of this quotation in Kgosana's article in the Sunday Times of July 1. And so the stuff of urban legend becomes "factual" historical record.
What is my view on the second transition and what did I say in the commission? I can confirm that both are not much different from what the conference finally decided.
Space permitting, I could elaborate on this, but it would go against the very reason for closed sessions, where members are expected and required to state their views freely and privately.
While journalists may be within their rights to forage for titbits, to quote a speaker authoritatively and repeatedly without even an attempt to check with the affected person smacks of sheer unprofessionalism.