South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has apologised for linking Malawians particularly the Yao Muslims from southern part of the country to a terrorist attack in Kenya.
An analyst for the media house Izak Khomo alleged that Al-Shabaab – the group that killed 21 people at a luxury hotel in Kenya earlier this month – recruits Malawians.
The remarks angered Malawians who asked SABC to clarify its baseless allegations saying the claims could tarnish Malawi’s image.
Malawi Non-Government Organisations and Government and penned SABC to clarify the claims.
In a letter addressed to Malawi Civil Society Led Black Economic Empowerment Movement (MaBLEM) Taskforce and copied to Malawi Ministry of Information, South African High Commissioner in Malawi and United Nations Malawi Representative, SABC said it has regrets broadcasting the false information on one of its airwaves.
“The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) regrets the unfortunate statements by an analyst on one of its news sources, the SABC News Channel during the coverage of the Kenya attacks on 15th January, 2019,” reads part of the letter signed by SABC boss Madoda Mxakwe.
SABC added that the claim that Al-Shabaab terrorists who attacked the hotel recruits Yao Muslims in Malawi are unsubstantiated and the media house is trying every possible way to correct the mistake.
The South African media house also assured Malawians that it abides by journalism ethics.
“In the interest of accurate reporting as well as finding a resolution to this matter, the Corporation and its news service extend the right of reply to representatives of the Malawi Government or community.
“The intention is to use the opportunity to state the facts correctly, prove clarity on the unfortunate assertions and deal with any negative impression emanating from the incident,”
SABC has further stressed that it broadcasts its news impartially just to keep on strengthening South Africa’s relations with all countries on the continent.