SABC boardless after delays in background checks

The SABC no longer has a board after Parliament failed to appoint new members due to the State Security Agency (SSA) dropping the ball on vetting potential candidates, Sunday Times reports.

The incumbent board’s tenure ended on Saturday, 15 October 2022, but the SSA had only done background checks on seven of the 34 as of last week Tuesday.

The remaining background checks will likely only be completed within a few weeks.

The portfolio committee has called on deputy president David Mabuza to intervene in the matter in his capacity as the leader of government business in Parliament.

That came after committee chair Boyce Maneli was advised that there was no provision in the Broadcasting Act to appoint an interim board.

The current committee has asked that the three executive directors of the SABC, chief executive officer Madoda Mxakwe, chief financial officer Yolande van Biljon and chief operations officer Ian Plaatjes, be appointed in the interim.

But this proposal has been slammed by the public broadcasting lobby group SOS Coalition, which questioned its legality.

“Under which provision of the act are they doing this? The board can only take decisions when it quorates, and they only quorate when there are nine board members,” said SOS co-ordinator Uyanda Siyotula.

Shortlisted candidates

The department first published a list of 37 shortlisted candidates being considered for the board on 9 September 2022.

Notably, it includes axed SABC News boss Phathiswa Magopeni, who was fired after accusing the ANC of political interference at the broadcaster.

The names of all the candidates for the SABC board are shown in the table below.

SABC Board shortlist
Adv T Thipanyane Ms C Stimpel
Dr O van Heerden Ms F Skweyiya Gushu
Dr R Horne cv Ms L Maepa
Mr D Maimela Ms M Mohlala Mulaudzi
Mr D Mohuba Ms M Moonsamy
Mr J Phalane Ms M Titi
Mr K Moshounyane Ms N Bapela
Mr K Ramukumba Ms N Batyi
Mr L Mtimde Ms N Matyumza
Mr L Rothschild Ms N Mda
Mr L Zita Ms P Kadi
Mr M Tsedu Ms P Tshangana Magopeni
Mr P Mashile Ms R Motaung
Mr Q Green Ms S Daya
Mr S Bokaba Ms T Gqubule-Mbeki
Mr T Fakude Ms Y Sikunyana
Mr Z Metthews Prof F Krüger
Mr Z Zamisa Prof S Cooper
Ms A Makhwanya

Without a board, the broadcaster’s executives will not be able to get approval for some of the measures it wants to implement as part of its ongoing turnaround process.

The SABC recently tabled its annual report for the 2021/2022 financial year, revealing a net loss of R200.78 million.

While this was a significant improvement from the previous year, the broadcaster continues to struggle to collect TV licence revenue.

During the year, only R815 million in TV licence fees were collected, working out to 18.3% of the total R4.446 billion billed.

Advertising revenue was down 23% from the previous year, primarily due to a loss in audience share.

Around 31% of South African viewers tuned in to SABC channels during primetime, compared to 35.8% in the previous year.


Now read: DStv kills app on some Samsung and Hisense TVs, pushes Streama box

Latest news

Partner Content

Show comments

Recommended

Share this article
SABC boardless after delays in background checks