Media statement from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on the Cape Town Press Club and Pieter Van Dalen
4 May 2012
The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Ms Tina Joemat-Pettersson confirms her refusal to address the Cape Town Press Club earlier this morning after finding out that the Democratic Alliance (DA) Pieter van Dalen would be sitting in.
In her response to why she wouldn’t want Van Dalen to sit in, Minister Joemat-Pettersson said she was under the impression that being invited to a press club, meant addressing members of the media – not politicians.
The Minister told the press club that respectfully, if they invite one political party, then they should invite all other political parties. In that case, she said she would have attended in her capacity as member of the National Executive Committee and the National Working Committee of the African National Congress.
She said she would have then prepared a political speech and not an information brief for the media.
For the record, the Minister did not ask for Van Dalen to leave. All that was communicated to Donwald Pressly, the Chairman of the press club was that the Minister is not going to address a meeting attended by a DA MP but advertised as a press club.
The Minister even offered to leave herself if the Press Club had issues with her misgivings.
We are convinced that Mr Van Dalen wanted to use the press club to launch a comeback on the Minister who lambasted him on Thursday in the National Assembly during her budget vote speech.
We have also noted with shock and dismay that in its statement, the press club did not include the Minister’s public explanation why she would not address the meeting as earlier constituted.
We now finally understand why the majority of black reporters in the city are not members of the press club.
For more information contact:
Special Advisor to the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
Tel: 012 319 6886 or 021 467 4500
Fax: 012 319 6681 or 021 465 6550
Cell: 084 666 0566
Issued by: Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
4 May 2012
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