The debate surrounding Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s suitability to serve as the SABC’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) is raging on.
In the latest development the Democratic Alliance (DA) lodged a legal application to have the appointment of Motsoeneng set aside.
This followed Communications Minister Faith Muthambi’s announcement in July that Motsoeneng had been appointed as the permanent SABC COO.
Muthambi and the SABC are fighting the DA’s application. The parties argue that the decision to appoint Motsoeneng as COO on a permanent basis was rational.
Motsoeneng qualifications debate
Motsoeneng is accused of lying about having a matric certificate, and his lack of a degree, diploma, or equivalent qualification is also raising questions.
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report, released in February 2014, found that Motsoeneng had purged senior staff and misrepresented his matric qualifications to the SABC.
Madonsela recommended that a new COO be appointed at the SABC within 90 days, but this did not happen.
Motsoeneng’s lawyer dismissed these concerns, saying his client was headhunted by the SABC and it is therefore incorrect to say he misrepresented himself to obtain a position.
“In strict labour law, this issue of matric or not is completely irrelevant to his employment post 2008,” Motsoeneng’s lawyer said.
Motsoeneng’s qualifications compared
Although a degree or diploma is by no means the only measure of being qualified to do a job, it is one of the requirements in an advertisement for the position of SABC COO.
An advertisement for the position of Chief Operations Officer at the SABC, published in the Sunday Times on 3 February 2013, states that the first requirement is “A relevant degree/diploma and/or equivalent qualification”.
This raises the question as to how Motsoeneng’s qualifications – which include a national certificate in general management – compare with those of his peers.
The following infographics show the qualifications of other SABC executives and State Owned Enterprises (SOE) COOs. It should be noted that not all SOEs have COO positions – therefore these organisations were not listed.