Gareth Cliff Biography
Gareth Cliff was born on 26th August 1977 in Pretoria, Gauteng in South Africa. He is a DJ and media personality. He is popularly known for his radio breakfast show on SABC Radio’s 5FM weekdays which he hosted until 2014.
Gareth Cliff Career
He started his radio career in 1996 at Tusks Radio as a DJ. In 1998 he moved to Talk Radio 702 where he worked as a producer until 1999.
In 2001 he became a DJ on Talk Radio 702. In 2003 he joined the second season of Idols, an international format reality television-music competition show which airs on M-Net. Gareth Cliff was fired on January 8, 2016 in the wake of Penny Sparrow racism row.
In 2009 he hosted ‘The Fareth Cliff Show’ an M-Net talk show which premiered on September 26.The first season had 23 episodes but the show was not renewed for a second season.
In 2013, he joined radio 5FM, SABC. In March 2014 he announce that he was leaving the station, “After two suspensions and several close-shaves, dozens of Broadcasting Complaints Commission of SA complaints and almost as many management changes at the SABC, it’s time to get unhinged,”
In May 2013 he was one of the people who presented awards to the winners at the 19th Annual South African Music Awards (SAMAs). He also had a cameo appearance on Disney’s Phineas and Ferb.
In 2014 after his departure from 5FM along with his team, they created a live streaming website, clifficentral.com, for his own radio show, the show was filmed for a reality show called The Gareth Cliff Show Live on Comedy Central.
As of June 2014 The Gareth Cliff Show Live was cancelled by Comedy Central due to failure to attract sufficient viewership.Though The cliffcentral.com people including Cliff dismissed the reports of cancellation, insisting that the decision to stop airing The Gareth Cliff Show on Comedy Central was mutual. “We mutually agreed to surrender the TV show. We (CliffCentral) felt it was fragmenting our audience rather than consolidating it,” Cliff and his team remain on air through cliffcentral.com, an online radio platform and WeChat.
Gareth Cliff Controversy
He was fired from Idol SA on January 8, 2016 due to his Twitter post on 4th January 2016 which cried freedom of speech in support of Penny Sparrow who had embarked on a scathing attack of black South African calling the monkeys and blaming them for dirty beaches in the city of Durban. On the January 5th, 2016 Gareth Cliff apologize but this was not enough to sway M-Net to spare his job.
“We do not believe that Gareth is a racist but his response showed a lack of empathy for our history and it is important to differentiate between freedom of speech and hate speech. Penny Sparrow’s comments were hateful. Hate speech is not applicable with regard to freedom of speech,” M-Net said in part in a statement.