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Cartoonist stood down pending review over Samoa cartoon

December 4, 2019 2:13 pm
An Otago Daily Times editor is facing backlash over a decision to publish a cartoon about the Samoan measles epidemic.

An Otago Daily Times editor is facing backlash over a decision to publish a cartoon about the Samoan measles epidemic.

Dozens of protesters – many demanding the resignations of cartoonist Garrick Tremain and editor Barry Stewart – gathered outside the ODT’s building in central Dunedin this afternoon.

Stuff.co.nz reports the newspaper has been heavily criticized for running the Samoa cartoon by Tremain in print on Tuesday.

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The Samoan Government has completely shut down its private sector following the deaths of 60 people there, most of whom were children.

The Otago Daily Times office in Dunedin has been locked on Wednesday as protesters gather outside following Tuesday’s cartoon incident.

The cartoon depicted two women walking out of a travel agent, with one saying to the other: “I asked, ‘What are the least popular spots at the moment?’ She said: ‘The ones people are picking up in Samoa.'”

ODT’s editor Barry Stewart confirms the newspaper’s editorial executives were reviewing their policies and would not run cartoons by Tremain while a review was underway.

Stewart apologized directly to the Samoan community and said he would meet with Samoan community leaders this afternoon.

Stewart told Stuff the review would be “quick”.

He said he had not seen the full apology Tremain posted on his website but believed it was genuine.

Asked if he signed off the cartoon, he said: “I’m the editor I take responsibility.”

Tremain published an apology on his website on Wednesday morning, saying the cartoon should not have been put forward for publication and acknowledging “the lack of judgement on my part”.

Protesters outside the Otago Daily Times on Wednesday afternoon.

[Source: Stuff.com]

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