Historic new appointments at Independent Media

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Cape Town – In a historic move, Independent Media has made a number of game-changing appointments to its editorial team, including selecting a black African as editor of the Cape Times.

Siyavuya Mzantsi has taken over the reins from Aneez Salie. He is the first black African editor of the Cape Times in its 143-year history. At 26, he is also the youngest editor in the group.

“This is a great honour for me. Aneez Salie has done an incredible job with the Cape Times and admirably paved the road ahead,” Mzantsi said.

“I am proud to have been under his wing and leadership.”

Salie has been appointed to the position of editor-in-chief of the group and will be responsible for the overall editorial oversight of the group.

This year, he celebrates his 40th anniversary with Independent Media.

“This is an awesome responsibility and one I very much look forward to. We are at a crucial time in our democracy in South Africa, one in which the media has a vital role to play.

“I am hoping to do my bit to support the democratic project by inculcating an environment of ethical and fearless journalism as well as leadership,” he said.

“Our aim is to build bridges within, and between communities, to create a strong and united South Africa.”

Yogas Nair, editor of The Mercury, has been appointed to the position of deputy editor-in-chief of the group.

Nair will work alongside Salie to ensure the quality of the editorial content of Independent Media’s publications and that all the titles in the group uphold and maintain ethical and balanced reporting.

“I am humbled by my appointment and thankful for the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the editorial policy of Independent Media.”

“I look forward to the work that lies ahead, as well as working alongside Aneez Salie,” Nair said.

Melanie Peters has been promoted to the position of editor of Weekend Argus Sunday. Peters had held the position of acting editor for the past 19 months, during which time she showed her dedication to the publication and its readership.

“I am honoured to continue to work with a good team of journalists who seek the truth, are the voice of the underdog and tell the stories of our communities, and who do not blindly follow the general consensus. I will always aim to seek an authentic narrative,” she said.

Making the announcement, Independent Media executive chairman Dr Iqbal Survé extended his congratulations to Salie, Mzantsi, Nair and Peters.

He emphasised that the appointments were in line with Independent Media’s transformation agenda.

“The appointments are a reflection of our ongoing focus on youth, gender, diversity and transformation in general. We continue to make sure that our appointments are aligned with our transformation ethos and reflect the demographics of our country,” said Dr Survé.

“We are incredibly proud of our home-grown talent. Siyavuya’s appointment is very well deserved and I would like to thank Aneez Salie for the role that he has played in nurturing a great pool of talent in his newsroom. Melanie has performed incredibly well, and her appointment is also well earned.

‘‘Yogas’ strong leadership and her dedication to her craft have made her the perfect candidate to support Aneez, who is one of our stalwart editors, in his new role as Editor-in-Chief.

‘‘I have complete confidence in the leadership of these new appointments.”

This story first appeared in the Cape Times