Mthembu calls ‘best brains’ to occupy senior SOE positions
THE ANC wants people with the “best brains” to occupy senior and managerial positions in the SABC and other state owned entities.
This was the view of the ANC policy committee on communications, headed by Jackson Mthembu, when reacting to questions from journalists about possible criminal actions against those accused of defrauding the public broadcaster of millions of rand.
The ANC committee on communication’s comments came as Parliament was already undertaking measures to restore integrity in various state owned entities like the SABC and SAA.
Last week, 11 members of the SAA board failed to appear before the parliamentary committee on finance, apparently in protest against board chairperson Dudu Myeni.
Myeni, according to insiders, was allegedly accused of undermining fellow board members.
At the SABC, former chief operations officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng, was shown the door while former acting chief executive James Aguma was still facing disciplinary action.
Other state owned entities like Eskom and Denel were implicated in former public protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela’s State of Capture report.
Deputy Minister of Telecommunications, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, who also sits on the committee, said they decided to await the outcome of the investigations, conducted by the SABC interim board, into corruption in the SABC and would support recommendations for criminal investigations against those implicated.
“We do not approve any acts of corruption,” Ndabeni-Abrahams said.
Mthembu, however, was more blatant on the need to act against corruption, saying SABC should begin a process of hunting for people with the “best brains” to occupy those positions to replace people like Motsoeneng and Aguma.
While he did not mention them by name during his media outcome, Mthembu said: “It is the SABC and other SOEs’ duty to get the best brains, to get best CEOs, CFOs and other senior managers for the SABC.
“But it should not be for the SABC only, it must apply to other state owned entities. The lack of the best brains is our Achilles heels.
“If we can’t get the best brains in the country, we must go to other countries to find them,” Mthembu said.
However, Ndabeni-Abrahams and Mthembu confirmed they simultaneously agreed to deal with internal differences and factions within their party.
Among their priorities, to improve the communication of government messages, was to centralise operations of the Government Communication Information Service in the office of the Presidency.
“They must communicate information directly from government.
“We are going to monitor the conduct and discipline of our government spokespersons,” Ndabeni-Abrahams warned.
In another bid to stop contradictions between government and ANC officials, Ndabeni-Abrahams said their party deployees would be given political education to ensure they spoke in a single voice on matters affecting the ANC. “
We want one message, but many voices,” she said.