The Democratic Alliance (DA) said on Wednesday that it will drop its contempt of court application against the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) – for now.
The DA’s James Selfe said that as the broadcaster had accepted the “terms of suspension of its chief operating officer (COO) Hlaudi Motsoeneng”‚ its “concerns have been addressed and satisfied in full”.
He‚ however‚ added: “Should we be concerned about the terms not being met‚ we will be entitled to approach court again.”
Motsoeneng’s suspension was ordered by the Supreme Court of Appeal‚ but he reportedly returned to work pending his application to appeal the matter at the Constitutional Court.
Selfe presented a letter from the SABC to the DA’s legal counsel that confirmed that it accepted the terms as contained in the party’s letter.
These were that Motsoeneng:
– Will not be allowed to access the premises of the SABC‚ other than for the purpose of attending his disciplinary inquiry;
– Will not be permitted to contact any SABC employees‚ or access any company documents‚ either physically or electronically; and
– Will not exercise any of the powers of the COO or participate in matters relating to the Board or in the governance of the SABC.
“This settlement is a resounding victory for every person who values our constitutional democracy and independent public broadcasting‚” said Selfe.
“The suspension of Motsoeneng is an opportunity to start getting the SABC back on track.”
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela had found that Motsoeneng had misrepresented his qualifications and irregularly received exorbitant salary increases.