Massive government bailouts planned for SABC, Post Office, SAA

The SA government plans to spend R59 billion on bailouts for the SABC, Post Office, SAA, and Sanral, according to a report in the Sunday Times.

Sources told the newspaper that the rescue plan was recently discussed by cabinet, with President Cyril Ramaphosa present.

If the organisations are not given the funds, they may collapse or default on current outstanding loans.

The report further stated that:

  • Sanral needs cash as it cannot borrow any more money.
  • The SABC is in a financial mess and needs a government guarantee.
  • SAA also needs a guarantee to borrow more.
  • The Post Office will get cash and guarantees.

Besides the looting, corruption, financial mismanagement, and extreme incompetence of employees at many state enterprises, the civil disobedience by motorists and their non-payment of e-tolls was highlighted as placing Sanral under pressure.

“Sanral last year wrote off e-toll debts amounting to R3.6 billion, as Gauteng motorists simply refused to pay to use the roads,” stated the report.

This comes after the organisation spent billions upgrading Gauteng’s freeways and installing the e-toll system.

Denel

In a separate report by the City Press, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has asked Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba not to liquidate state-owned arms company Denel.

Denel failed to repay a R290-million loan from the city, which was borrowed in 2012.

Gordhan reportedly told Mashaba that Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene is “considering a lifeline for the embattled state-owned company”.

An application for a government guarantee has already been considered by the minister of finance, Gordhan told Mashaba.

Big SABC problems

The latest report follows news that the SABC was on its deathbed, from a financial perspective. The SABC reportedly owes over R100 million to 64 companies and is operating on a hand-to-mouth basis.

It was also recently reported that the SABC was unable to negotiate a new Bafana Bafana and Banyana Banyana broadcast rights contract due to its money problems.

The SABC reportedly owes the South African Football Association over R50 million for its previous broadcast contract.

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Massive government bailouts planned for SABC, Post Office, SAA