PSL chairman Irvin Khoza announced the new competition on Friday where winners who correctly predicts the outcome of matches will be rewarded with R500 000 for each of the three categories; print, television and radio after the end of each quarter, with the new season having been divided into four quarters. Quarter one will have eight fixtures and so forth.
Sanef have released a statement, saying the new competition for the reporters doesn’t only violate the journalism code, but also undermines the ethics of the profession.
“Sanef wishes to place on record that it was not party to this ‘extensive’ consultation process, nor is it aware of any other credible industry bodies that were consulted about this competition,” the statement reads.
“Had Sanef been consulted, we would have made it clear to the PSL that the competition undermines the ethics of our profession. This competition seeks to turn journalists who use their skills to report and analyse football into gamblers.
“It risks opening the door for corrupt practices which our profession has no desire to be part of. Equating this competition with other awards is disingenuous. Genuine journalism awards reward excellence and hard work.
“The proposed competition is also a direct violation of our professional codes, which state that journalists should avoid conflicts of interest and ‘arrangements or practices that could lead audiences to doubt the press' independence and professionalism’.
“However, should journalists wish to participate in lotteries and sweepstakes in their individual capacities they are free to do so. But this cannot be done under the guise of professional work. Journalists are not allowed to use their roles in media outlets - broadcast, print and digital - for gambling purposes.”
Sanef says it will be seeking a meeting with the PSL to voice their concerns about this competition and “its potentially corrosive impact on journalism and media ethics”.