Democracy and Governance
Media freedom is critical to the operation of democracy. Media should not only be free from political interference. Elections represent the pinnacle of political change in a democracy. While media has a vital role to play at all times, it has a particularly important role to fulfil in an election period. Media must navigate between the personal contentions and accusations of the parties to clarify the core issues of principles and policy so that the public is in a position make an informed vote on election day.
The Media Monitoring Project was started in 1993 (as the Broadcast Monitoring Project) out of concerns over whether the South African media, fresh out of Apartheid could fairly portray the issues around the 1994 elections. Since then we have monitored every South African election, both local and national, releasing the results as regularly as possible to highlight and advocate for improvement in elections. MMP is the only monitor of the fairness of elections over a range of media.
Find out how South African media has performed in covering elections through our elections reports