MPs block Hlaudi’s tes­ti­mony

Po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence at the SABC

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - SIYABONGA MKHWANAZI

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

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.