The South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) says it’s saddened by the death of two SABC employees.
Pretoria-based Assignment Editor Tumelo Matloha and Durban-based Logistics Manager Michael Conradi both succumbed to COVID-19.
Sanef Chairperson Sbu Ngwala has called on all media houses to fully support their workers by ensuring that they have access to protective gear and trauma counselling.
“This highlights the dangers journalists and media workers face on a daily basis both as frontline and essential workers. We thus call on all leaders in civil society, the corporate sector, government, and community to support the role of the media and journalists. Given the pandemic and the current economic crises, the media industry has had to face serious commercial challenges that have resulted in hundreds of job losses with more expected in the next few months,” says Ngwala.
Matloha joined the SABC as an intern in 1996 and was hired as a reporter in 1997. He was promoted to be an assignment editor in December 2006.
Matloha was working at the SABC’s Pretoria office at the time of his passing. He also worked at the public broadcaster’s Limpopo office for some time. He succumbed to COVID-19 this past Sunday.
Conradie died in a Durban hospital after being admitted with viral lung infection two weeks ago. He tested positive for COVID-19 after being admitted to ICU last Monday.