The South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) is deeply saddened to hear of the death of Lungile Tom, a cameraman, who worked at eNCA at the company’s Cape Town office. Lungile was turning 46 this year.
Lungile Tom was admitted to hospital on Sunday night, May 10, with COVID-19 related symptoms.
He was tested and admitted to intensive care. Lungile’s test results confirmed that he had COVID-19 and he passed away in hospital this morning, Wednesday May 13.
eMedia Chief Operating Officer Antonio Lee said, “Lungile joined eNCA in December 2013 as an ENG Camera Operator. Prior to this he worked at CNBC Africa. He stated, “Lungile was known for his larger than life personality and his dedication to his craft. His buoyant laughter will be sorely missed. Our thoughts are with his wife, Nandipha and his children.”
We have been informed that eNCA in adherence with government regulations have disinfected and closed the affected floor and that the company has instituted a tracing and tracking process. Employees who have had contact with Lungile have been advised to stay at home. They will be tested and will go into self-isolation if needed.
SANEF believes that this tragic death points to the very dangerous work that journalists do, working on the frontline. We call on all media companies to assist journalists with protective gear and for journalists to be extra careful and follow all safety precautions. We also call on media companies, where possible, to assist journalists with trauma counselling. SANEF has included a number of resources on its website to assist media companies and journalists in this very difficult time. Please see a link to them here and here.
SANEF sends its heartfelt condolences to Lungile’s family, friends and colleagues.