Home Advertising Icasa revises political advertisement regulations for upcoming elections

Icasa revises political advertisement regulations for upcoming elections

by Kikelomo Oyenuga
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As South Africa gears up for the forthcoming national and provincial elections on 29 May, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) has released an Amendment to the Regulations Governing National and Provincial Party Elections Broadcasts and Political Advertisements, 2014.

This follows consultation with stakeholders which began last year in October 2023 with the publication for public consultation of Draft Regulations, followed by provincial workshops and public hearings. The regulations are applicable during the election period to broadcasting service licensees (BSL); and are also applicable to political parties, and independent candidates contesting the upcoming national and provincial
The Regulations provide the framework and guidelines to be followed by BSL and political parties/independent candidates during the election period.
The changes in the Regulations include the following:

  1. 1. To make provision for independent candidates, Party Election Broadcasts are now redesignated as ‘Political Election Broadcasts’ (PEBs).

  2. 2. The duration of PEBs has been reduced from 50 seconds to 40 seconds, with a concomitant increase of PEB slots from 10 slots per day to 12 slots per day.

  3. 3. A commercial or community broadcasting BSL that intends to broadcast PEBs must inform the Authority in writing of its intention to do so within 20 calendar days of the publication of these Regulations. The Authority will thereafter publish the list of BSLs that will be broadcasting PEBs.

  4. 4. Political parties and independent candidates are required to submit their PEBs to those BSLs participating in the broadcast of PEBs within five calendar days after the publication in the Gazette of the list of BSLs that will be carrying PEBs.

  5. 5. A BSL that rejects a PEB submitted to it must within five days furnish the independent candidate or political party concerned with reasons for the rejection.

“Icasa will undertake comprehensive monitoring of elections coverage, to ensure adherence by BSLs to the Regulations and license conditions”, says committee chairperson, Cllr Nompucuko Nontombana.

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