MPs block Hlaudi’s testimony
Political interference at the SABC
Former SABC chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng was blocked from giving his side of the story in Parliament.
The ruling party and other opposition parties blocked attempts to get Motsoeneng to give evidence.
The ad hoc committee appeared to be drafting a damning report, as most of the MPs backed the evidence that implicated Motsoeneng in wrongdoing. The report is not final, but the ad hoc committee was crafting the report expected to be adopted on Tuesday.
UDM chief whip Nqaba Kwankwa first proposed Motsoeneng be allowed to give evidence. But his attempt was blocked by most parties in the National Assembly, who said the process was closed.
ANC MPs accused the UDM of political grandstanding and being opportunistic.
But Kwankwa said he was unfazed by personal attacks by the ANC and was putting forward the position of his party.
“We are not naïve.
“We know the political dynamics and why the ANC does not want Hlaudi to come here.” Committee chairperson Vincent Smith said the majority of the parties did not want Motsoeneng to give evidence.
“That is the decision taken by everybody, in the event that it is challenged we will be able to defend it.”
Sifting through the evidence of witnesses MPs said there were many issues raised, which went beyond governance, and lack of action against people involved in irregularities.
This is apparent in the fact that no action was taken on the findings of the auditor-general.
The committee also said there were issues on the separation of powers between Communications Minister Faith Muthambi and the role and functions of the SABC board.
ANC MP Fezeka Loliwe said there should be separation of powers to avoid political interference at the SABC.
The Constitution, the Executive Ethics Code and the Powers, Privileges and Immunities of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act clearly stipulate the functions of the minister.
Phumzile van Damme said it must also be noted the issue of the conflict between the Broadcasting Act and the Companies Act.
MPs said it was evident the Broadcasting Act trumped the Companies Act.
Muthambi insisted last year the Companies Act superseded the Broadcasting Act in the SABC board meeting without a quorum. Members of the committee also agreed issues at the SABC also centred around procurement.
There were many deals approved irregularly at the public broadcaster. politically