On 25 February 2019, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) published the National and Provincial Party Elections Broadcasts and Political Advertisements Amendment Regulations, 2019 (Amendment Regulations).
As explained in the Reasons Document to the Amendment Regulations:
“These regulations provide a framework outlining the responsibilities of [broadcasting service licensees] and political parties during the election period. Therefore, the most important aspect for the regulations during the election period is finding the right balance between the respect for editorial independence and the need for rules to guarantee that media coverage is balanced.”
The Amendment Regulations amend the Regulations on Party Elections Broadcast, Political Advertisements, the Equitable Treatment of Political Parties by Broadcasting Service Licensees and Related Matters, 2014. The amendments include the following:
- That a broadcasting service licensee that broadcasts a party election broadcast (PEB) must make available 10 time-slots of 50 seconds each for the broadcast of PEBs, every day through the election broadcast period.
- That all PEBs must be clearly identified and announced in a similar manner.
- That all political advertisements must be clearly identified and announced through a top and tail disclaimer.
- That the technical standards and quality for television and radio must comply with the amended requirements contained in Annexure C of the Amendment Regulations.
The Amendment Regulations are accessible here.
Please note: The information contained in this note is for general guidance on matters of interest, and does not constitute legal advice. For any enquiries, please contact us at [email protected].