John Matisonn began political reporting at the Rand Daily Mail in 1974, and received a prison sentence for refusing to divulge his source of reports about the South African Watergate scandal known as Muldergate.
He did this work while barred from the apartheid Parliament throughout the apartheid era as a “security risk.” A foreign correspondent in Washington for the Rand Daily Mail and back in Johannesburg for National Public Radio (US), he has been published in the New York Times, Financial Times, Washington Post, The Observer and many others.
After four years as a broadcast regulator in the Mandela administration and two as editorial director of the short-lived THISDAY newspaper, he became the United Nations’ Chairperson of the Electoral Media Commission in Afghanistan. He returned from a second tour in Afghanistan to write his first book in Franschhoek, Western Cape.
On his appointment to the Interim Board of the SABC in March 2017, he cancelled his CTV weekly programme BETWEEN THE LINES, and put aside work on his second book.