MMA warns of compassion when covering Joburg fire

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Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) has urged media houses and journalists to exercise compassion when reporting on the fatal fire in the Johannesburg CBD, where more than 70 lives were lost in the tragedy.

The organisation says via a statement ‘that coverage of the crisis raises three critical areas for concern.’

“Firstly, the critical need for media to report and adhere to highest ethical standards, in reporting on an unfolding tragedy, secondly, the need to avoid harmful xenophobic and inciteful content on social media platforms and finally for public officials themselves to adhere to their oath of office and to ensure their responses are in line with their constitutional obligations,” further reads the statement.

MMA raised concern about journalists interviewing families that lost loved ones in the fire that ravaged the Marshalltown building.

“In some cases, journalists have interviewed those who have lost loved ones. While it is important to include the views and perspectives of witnesses and those directly impacted, it is essential that journalists maintain the highest ethical standards in the face of this crisis.”

Click here for full statement by MMA.