The thrust of the grievance was that, when reporting on the recent xenophobic attacks, the Daily Sun constantly using the term “alien” and its negative connotations and associations. The MMP claims the newspaper was clearly perpetuating negative stereotypes that were racially-based and discriminatory.R
align=justifyOn August 8, Press Ombudsman Joe Thloloe rejected the “alien” complaint. He said the MMP had become “tangled up in a logical knot when it referred at various points in its own submission to non-nationals, foreign nationals, non-South Africans, foreigners, non-South African residents, and non-national people”. R
align=justifyHe added that the weight of the MMP’s complaint rested on the use of the word “alien” in the newspaper’s stories, headlines and graphics and the MMP had failed to prove its case. R
align=justifyWilliam Bird, director of the MMP, says he is very disappointed in the ruling. “We are in the process of finalising our documents and we plan to lodge an appeal against the ombudsman’s ruling.R
align=justify”I think that there are a few problems with the ombudsman’s ruling. The Daily Sun violated the press code in terms of balance, accuracy, fairness and blatant bias. The ombudsman did not address all the elements of our complaint and the elements that were addressed were problematic.”R
align=justifyBird says the MMP is aiming to ensure that the Press Council does what it is intended to do – “mediate and regulate where the media gets it wrong”.