Presenters and journalists Xoli Mngambi and Jane Dutton have been suspended by eNCA following their commentaries on the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma U-turn on tobacco sales ban.
Dlamini-Zuma announced that contrary to what the President has said, Tobacco sales will not be permitted on Level 4 of lockdown.
Various media houses commented on the matter, with many suggesting Dlamini-Zuma single-handedly took the decision to ban the alcohol.
Mngambi and Dutton also commented on the issue saying “A reminder of who is controlling South Africa’s narrative right now, not the president, but cabinet minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. How? She used her power and considerable influence to ensure the ban on cigarettes sale remains,”
Despite their apology, media house eNCA suspended the duo.
President Ramphosa also clarified that the decision to ban the sale of tobacco was a collective one
“On 23 April, I announced that cigarette sales would be permitted during level 4. This was based on the view of the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), and which was contained in the draft framework that was published for consulation,” Ramaphosa noted
“After careful consideration and discussion, the NCCC reconsidered its position on tobacco. As a result, the regulations ratified by Cabinet and announced by Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on 29 April extended the prohibition.
“This was a collective decision and the public statements by both myself and the Minister were done on behalf of, and mandated by, the collective I lead,” he added.