After just under a year-and-a-half as eNCA’s editor in chief, Mapi Mhlangu will be stepping away from the role, with immediate effect.
In a release the broadcaster cited Mhlangu’s juggling of the onerous demands of the job along with the workload of her MBA as the reason, adding, “The tension between these two commitments was raised a couple of months ago leading to a difficult decision for both parties.”
eNCA stresses that the decision is by mutual agreement.
Khalik Sherrif, CEO of eMedia Investments says, “The company acknowledges Mapi’s contribution and would like to thank her for her unwavering loyalty to our newsroom and the huge part she has played in its success. We believe the time is right ahead of the election period to make this change, allowing the existing management team a chance to focus and prepare for 2019.”
During her time in the position Mhlangu oversaw the implementation of a number of changes including a complete restructuring of the news output and input protocols; the redesign and construction of three new broadcast sets; the appointment of a number of new key staff; the up-weighting of the channel’s international coverage; launching three new shows (CrimeWatch; Madam Speaker and Almost News with Chester Missing); and a complete revamp of the station’s weekend line-up.
“I leave eNCA in a strong position as SA’s television news leader but this is the right time for me to leave and hand over the reins. I’ve enjoyed the myriad challenges I’ve dealt with during my leadership tenure and know that I leave the operation in safe hands. My only wish is that eNCA continues reporting the news fearlessly and without favour; continues to set the agenda and ask tough questions South Africans deserve answers to,” comments Mhlangu.
Current editor-at-large and senior anchor Jeremy Maggs will step into Mhlangu’s role, curtailing his on air duties for now to head the newsroom. He will be supported by the senior editorial management team, which includes Ragani Achary (head of input); Jody Jacobs (head of output) and Sally Burdett (story editor and head of anchors).
Maggs had nothing but praise for Mhlangu, saying, “I’d like to pay tribute to Mapi’s exemplary leadership. Under her guidance she has cemented eNCA’s position as the first source of television news in South Africa. I look forward to leading the station into 2019 and through the election. We have an extraordinarily strong product; a dedicated and talented team of over 500 people who collectively work tirelessly to bring news and analysis to South Africa in the fairest and most impartial manner.”
Karima Brown taking over?
Economic Freedom Fighters’ spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi however may have inside information on the move, posting this tweet after eNCA’s announcement:
If they confirm this, @ENCA would have essentially lost its independence & ability to earn the trust of all political players. Brown is a full on politician!
— Mbuyiseni Ndlozi (@MbuyiseniNdlozi) November 28, 2018