Radio team gets nasty
YFM programmes manager Tumelo Diaho-Monaheng could well be in for a scalding after failing to inform her bosses of a sensitive complaint laid against the youth station.
The complaint was laid by listener Andrew Maringa with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) following comments made by the station's flagship breakfast show team.
The concerned Maringa also cc'd Diaho-Monaheng when he e-mailed his protest to the radio authorities.
Diaho-Monaheng dismissed Maringa and failed to let YFM CEO Kanthan Pillay know that a complaint had been laid against the station.
Pillay says he is not aware of the complaint against the presenters and that neither the BCCSA nor the programmes manager had notified him about it.
Bizarrely, the BCCSA also dismissed the complaint without investigating it, saying they could not rule on a complaint concerning anyone other than the complainant.
In Maringa's written submission, he alleges that Generations actress Maggie "Akhona" Benedict was branded as "ugly" and that her looks were likened to those of US movie star Wesley Snipes.
The unwarranted tirade against the soapie star was allegedly championed by YFM breakfast show host Mo Flava.
Maringa wrote to the BCCSA: "I was listening to the radio in the morning and they were busy going on about how ugly Maggie Benedict, who plays Akhona Miya on Generations, is. This has been going on for some time now (it happened three times already in the time I was listening).
However, Diaho-Monaheng responded: "For the record, our breakfast team did not refer to Maggie Benedict (Akhona) as an ugly-looking person.
"They merely implied that she has a resemblance to UK pop star Estelle.
"We uphold the dignity of all people at all times. We have well trained and responsible broadcasters who are well versed in the Broadcasting Code."
To make matters worse, the BCCSA says it would be difficult for them to preside over the complaint as it was not lodged by Benedict.
The BCCSA's registrar Shouneez Martin replied to Maringa: "We acknowledge receipt of your complaint and would like to advise that, in accordance with BCCSA procedural rules, when lodging a complaint we require the complainant's address as well as the date and time of broadcast.
"The complaint in our view concerns the dignity of a person and we would like to advise that BCCSA Tribunals found in previous cases that complaints involving the privacy and dignity of people other than the complainant [Akhona] are difficult to judge since we do not know what the person's reaction might have been."