Radio man Barry Bateman has issued an unreserved apology to EFF leader Julius Malema, his employer, Eyewitness News, all South Africans and “all women” for last month’s off-the-cuff remark.
Bateman was caught on camera using a derogatory phrase while in conversation with another reporter, after an impromptu press briefing by Malema outside the Hawks’ offices on September 10. He was taken off air when the video was shared on social media.
“As a senior journalist and a citizen of South Africa, I have a duty to uphold the highest ethical standards and professional conduct, whatever the circumstances or differences I may have with other newsmakers,” he said in Tuesday’s apology.
“My comments went against my company’s values and risked undermining the important role it plays in promoting gender equality, its contribution to the country’s war against gender-based violence, and its role in building trust as an ethical media house.
“I have accepted the disciplinary charges immediately instituted against me by EWN, as well as the consequences that my actions have borne. This includes a one-month suspension without pay for the month of October and a final written warning for my conduct, valid for a period of 12 months.
“ … I will continue to reflect on my unbecoming conduct during the period of my suspension.”