There is a very good reason journalists should attend events rather than rely on media statements: to make sure they actually happen.
defenceWeb reported Tuesday that a report on military veterans had been handed to defence and military veterans minister Lindiwe Sisulu.
The author of the report – this writer – chose not to attend the event but rather to “cover” it as we say in the media, remotely, by relying on the media release.
The invite stated the event would take place at 11.30. We published a 11.53am on the happy assumption that the report would by then be handed over. We all know about assumptions and the first three letters of hat word, don’t we?
Suffice to say it has since emerged that while the media did assemble at 11.30, the report had not been handed over by 11.53 – or at all. It appears there was some snag with the report and the event was at first delayed and then postponed to next Tuesday.
This time I’ll either attend to make sure – with my own eyes – the handover takes place, or ensure I have the word of trustworthy eyewitnesses.
My profound apologies to our readers. We got it wrong.