The messenger, the message and the receiver: South African government communication during the Covid-19 pandemic

Herman Wasserman and Dani Madrid-Morales have co-authored a chapter in Manufacturing Government Communication on Covid-19: A Comparative Perspective.

Their chapter titled “The messenger, the message and the receiver: South Africa government communication during the Covid-19 pandemic” provides an overview on how communication on the Covid-19 crisis delivered by the South African government was received by the South African public. At the start of the pandemic President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered regular televised addresses to the nation to discuss updates regarding infection rates and lockdown levels. The South African government also delivered daily updates via social media and news media about infections, recoveries and vaccinations

Survey data showcased that there was drop in approval from the South African public between 2020 and 2021 with regards to the government’s handling of the pandemic. This decline came at a time where South Africa’s former Minister of Health was arrested on corruption charges and the country’s vaccination rollout was disrupted by procurement, administrative and communication challenges.

This chapter ties in with a working paper by Wasserman and Madrid-Morales titled, “Trust in Institutions, COVID-19 Related Information Seeking and Vaccination Messaging in South Africa”, read more about it here.

Manufacturing Government Communication on Covid-19: A Comparative Perspective is now available for purchase.