20/07/2017 10:19 SAST | Updated 20/07/2017 13:14 SAST

BCCSA Ruling Is 'Deeply Flawed And Unconvincing' -- 702's Eusebius McKaiser

Primedia will challenge the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa's ruling against the 702 host over a "controversial" discussion on the role and legacy of FW De Klerk.

Artur Widak / NurPhoto / Getty Images
Former state president FW de Klerk addresses the Trinity College Law Society after he was presented with the Praeses Elit Award as a recognition of his key role in ending apartheid and his 'outstanding contribution to reconciliation' in South Africa. 18 January 2017, in Dublin, Ireland.

A Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) ruling against radio station 702 is "deeply flawed and unconvincing" and will be appealed by Primedia, talk show host Eusebius McKaiser said on Wednesday evening.

The ruling handed down by BCCSA panel chairperson Professor Henning Viljoen found that McKaiser had created a "hostile environment" on the programme by broadcasting part of a 1993 speech by former president FW De Klerk "out of context".

McKaiser, on his show broadcast on May 7, discussed the "controversial issue of the role of ex-president FW de Klerk in the political discourse of the future of this country which is a matter of public important", the ruling said. [McKaiser] demonstrated "intolerance towards opposing views and made no reasonable efforts to fairly present opposing points of views", it said.

"No right of reply was granted to De Klerk or his spokesperson by inviting any of them to appear on a programme that was clearly intended to criticise De Klerk", it said.

Chairperson of the FW De Klerk Foundation and first complainant in the case, Dave Steward, said McKaiser had launched a "vitriolic attack on Mr De Klerk without inviting comment in his defence. He was accompanied by Sithembile Mbete, an academic from the University of Pretoria, who was also hostile to Mr De Klerk".

Stewart said he was "shouted down and ultimately cut off by Mr McKaiser" when he phoned it to "try provide other perspectives". The commission said this constituted a contravention of clause 13 of the Broadcasting Code.


'De Klerk is overrated in rainbow nation histories that misremember his complete past'

Primedia has indicated it "respectfully" disagrees with the ruling and will be filing notice for leave to appeal, The Citizen reported on Thursday.

"I agree with the decision to appeal it," McKaiser said in a Facebook post on Wednesday evening. "Frankly, I'd love to argue the appeal myself but the attorneys handling it do not need my assistance. They are brilliant," he wrote.

He said he respects the BCCSA as an institution but disagrees with this particular ruling.

"I would handle the issue of De Klerk EXACTLY THE SAME WAY IF we have the same debate and same arrogance from Dave Steward tomorrow," he wrote.

McKaiser said he did not think debating the legacy of De Klerk and his place in history entitles him to be invited on to a media platform and that he is "overrated in rainbow nation histories that misremember his complete past".

"So... sorry for the trolls who imagine I must be feeling rather sad about the BCCSA ruling. I don't. They got it wrong".