Supreme Court drops SABC boss’ appeal

BY CHARL BOSCH - OCTOBER 8, 2015

The Bloemfontein Supreme Court of Appeal has rejected controversial South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Chief Operating Officer (COO), Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s appeal for leave against his suspension pending the outcome of a disciplinary hearing.

Motsoeneng was placed on 60 days suspension by the Western Cape High Court in April following the lodging of an investigation by the Democratic Alliance (DA), after a report by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found that he lied about his academic qualifications, illegally got rid of senior board members and upped his salary from R1.5 million to R2.4 million in less than a year.

In passing its verdict on Thursday, the court stated that the public broadcaster should implement disciplinary action against Motsoeneng, and that a similar investigation contradicting Madonsela’s findings, cannot be instituted.

Speaking in a statement, DA Federal Chairperson James Selfe said the party feels vindicated by the court’s ruling, adding that it’s clarifying of Madonsela’s powers “has serious ramifications” for President Jacob Zuma regarding the R246-million security upgrades at his private Nkandla home.

“The President effectively acted in direct contravention of established legal precedent when he appointed the Police Minister to make a determination of how much he was liable for the non-security upgrades at Nkandla. This clearly constituted a “parallel process”. President Zuma must face the music and simply pay back the money,” Selfe said.

“One thing is clear: there is an obligation on Hlaudi, [the] Minister of Communications Faith Muthambi, the SABC and President Jacob Zuma - on the Nkandlagate scandal – [to] uphold and give effect to the findings of the Public Protector”.