JOHANNESBURG - The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) has claimed that censorship was used to prevent Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, from visiting the country to attend a Nobel laureates’ peace conference.
“It has now been admitted by Finance Minister Trevor Manuel that the purpose [of cancelling the peace conference] was to censor and prevent South Africans from hearing what would have been said,” news24.com quoted Noma Rangana, the chairperson of the SA Chapter of MISA, as saying.
“It is rare for a democratic government to publicly invoke censorship though this… Imposing this ban on the Dalai Lama propagates transparency as one of its major aims,” she added.
“In censoring the Dalai Lama, the government has also censored the country’s media by preventing newspapers, and the electronic media from reporting and publishing the speech of the Dalai Lama. The spurious excuses given by the government for barring the Dalai Lama confirm that the government has caved in under pressure from the Chinese, a humiliating posture given SA’s staunch fight against colonialism,” Rangana said.
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