eNCA wins appeal regarding Gareth Cliff’s interview with David Icke

Appeal Tribunal found conspiracy theorist’s comments were ‘clearly his opinion based on facts truly stated’

09 July 2021 - 15:00
By chrizelda kekana AND Chrizelda Kekana
Gareth Cliff is off the hook after interviewing conspiracy theorist David Icke.
Image: Supplied Gareth Cliff is off the hook after interviewing conspiracy theorist David Icke.

So What Now? host Gareth Cliff, e.tv and eNCA are breathing more easily after the Appeal Tribunal of the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of SA (BCCSA) found in their favour that the comments made by conspiracy theorist David Icke did not breach the SA broadcasting code.

Last year, Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) complained to the BCCSA that Gareth’s showbroadcast on July 22 2020 was unlawful, harmful and in breach of SA’s broadcasting code.

The BBCSA’s initial stance was that the episode spread “dangerous misinformation” and e.tv and eNCA were fined R10k for airing the episode.

However, earlier this week, the Appeal Tribunal issued a different finding after eNCA appealed the initial judgment.

In statement released on the website, the summary of the judgment read as follows: “The appeal was upheld. The comments of the guest, Mr Icke, was his honest opinion based on facts truly stated. The added requirement that comment in terms of Clauses 28(2) (2) and 12(2) should be reasonable and justifiable is unfounded and rejected.

In the episode, Gareth interviewed conspiracy theorist Icke, who claimed Covid-19 didn’t exist.

The conspiracy theorist claimed “concerns” about Covid-19 were a scam, and he described the pandemic as a hoax.

Read the full judgment here.