Movement of media at ANC policy conference restricted
The paranoia that has gripped the ANC has been laid bare at its policy conference in Johannesburg after it introduced stringent security measures to prevent journalists from interacting with delegates.
This follows an earlier warning by the party's leadership that they would clamp down on leaks at the conference.
Since the opening of the conference on Friday‚ journalists have been restricted to the media lounge at the Nasrec Expo Centre‚ south of Johannesburg.
ANC security guards have threatened to confiscate media accreditation tags if journalists attempt to speak to delegates.
It appears that security had been instructed to keep a close eye on journalists to a point of even escorting members of the media in areas strictly reserved for delegates.
Security was so tight that even an official ANC photographer was barred from entering beyond the parameter fence surrounding the main conference hall‚ a source told TimesLIVE.
A security official with knowledge of the arrangements said that security personnel were given strict instructions governing the media’s interaction with delegates.
The official added that the media would only be allowed to engage delegates after obtaining permission from the party's communications team. Furthermore‚ journalists from TimesLive exhausted all possible ways to gain access to the delegates from their parking lot but this was again blocked by security.
They also strictly checked every tag to determine if the face on it corresponded with the bearer.