In a column published on Friday morning, Independent Media owner Dr Iqbal Survé unleashed a torrent of abuse on Business Day, owned by his company’s rival Tiso Blackstar, slamming them for “hypocrisy and lies” and alleging that the newspaper applies a “different standard” to “white companies as opposed to black companies” which he says demonstrates “subliminal racism”.
Survé begins by dismissing Business Day as “irrelevant” saying the paper has a “small daily circulation” of “approximately 20,000 nationally” which he compares to his own Business Report, which he claims “has more than R1.5 million readers”.
He then goes on to applaud Sunday Times editor Bongani Siqoko for “bravely” apologising for the newspaper’s “shameful violation of the press code and media manipulation” regarding their coverage of the alleged Sars “rogue unit”.
He then suggests that Business Day should offer Public Investment Corporation (PIC) boss Dan Matjila and Maison Holdings (MST) owner Pretty Louw a similar apology for their allegation that the pair were romantically involved.
READ MORE: PIC inquiry not just about Dan Matjila
According to Survé, Business Day’s Carol Paton “rehashed” these allegations “repeatedly in the Goebbels tradition of propaganda”.
Independent Media reported earlier this week that a report by Geoff Budlender following a forensic investigation into Matjila’s conduct is “expected” to clear Matjila of allegations that he was romantically involved with Louw and gave her money. Notably, this is only one of several corruption allegations Matjila faces. The report is expected to be available to the public at some point today.
Survé goes on to make clear that he also sees himself as a “victim” of “subliminal racism” in Business Day’s “shenanigans and defamatory campaign” against him.
The crux of Survé’s argument appears to be that “white” businesses – he cites Steinhoff and the South African Post Office, whose CEO Mark Barnes is white, as examples – are treated differently to “black” businesses like his own Sekunjalo Group.
“Business Day has a particular way of portraying black executives and black companies,” he alleges.
Survé’s rant can be read in its entirety here.
Attempts to contact both Business Day editor Lukanyo Mnyanda and journalist Carol Paton were unsuccessful at the time of publication but we will continue to try and reach them for comment.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman)