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Last week’s Constitutional Court judgment on digital migration is significant for two main reasons. It puts the interests of the poor ahead of those of commerce and well-to-do South Africans and it stresses the importance of effective public consultation and engagement when government develops and implements public policies.

The ruling comes after more than 15 years of government wandering in the desert on the migration of broadcasting from analogue to digital. As the court noted, government has set and missed several deadlines for the project since 2006...

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