South Africa’s first 24-hour TV news service

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June will see the launch of South Africa’s first ever 24-hour TV news service, the eNews Channel, which will only be available as a pay-TV service to subscribers of DStv’s Premium and Compact bouquets. The eNews Channel is the first offering from e.sat, sister company to free-to-air channel e.tv. Last year e.sat was awarded a subscription TV licence from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). It has since opted to provide programming to MultiChoice’s DStv bouquet of channels, rather than launch its own pay-TV platform.

Well known broadcast journalists Redi Direko and Jeremy Maggs will lead the eNews Channel’s on-air team. They will host News Night weekdays from 7pm to 9pm. Says editor-in-chief of eNews Debra Patta: “The eNews Channel will offer South African, regional and international news, including live reports, breaking news, sport, weather, entertainment and financial information. Included in the line-up will be current affairs shows which will look at local issues in depth. “Our channel will give viewers the opportunity to watch South African based and interpreted independent news when they want. It will be prime time news, all the time.”

CEO of e.sat Marcel Golding described the upcoming launch as a historic moment in local broadcasting history. “We believe that the eNews Channel will become an important voice in South Africa’s democracy.” The eNews Channel will be on DStv channel 403.