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SABC pursuing charges against Motsoeneng

The SABC board chairperson, Bongumusa Makathini, says they are still pursuing charges against the former COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng for the money he illegally got from the public broadcaster.

Motsoeneng was named in the report of the Commission of Inquiry into Editorial Interference at the SABC in connection with improper appointments and editorial interference.

The report also reveals incidents of staff victimisation and the impulsive use of authority.

Makathini says they want to recoup R21 million from Motsoeneng with the help of the Special Investigating Unit.

“It is very sad and very painful; it talks to a very bleak and dark past that the SABC journalists and editorial staff were subjected to. But what is giving hope is that a lot has been done to turn around the situation and provide them with that level of protection and assurance that as the board we stand for independence and impartiality. We’re in court with Hlaudi Motsoeneng trying to recover R21 million. We’ve been assisted also by the SIU. There is about R21 million that we trying to recover from Mr Hlaudi Motsoeneng.”

Former Communications minister Faith Muthambi and the former SABC board member Ellen Tshabalala say they will study the report of the Commission of Inquiry into Editorial Interference at the SABC before commenting.

However, the SABC board says it is deeply concerned about the report’s findings on individual employees implicated in editorial interference and will take disciplinary action against them.

“The SABC commits to taking urgent disciplinary action against those implicated in terms of the SABC’s disciplinary code and policies. The notion that holding those implicated in wrongdoing accountable would be seen as a witch hunt is rejected. In fact it is part of the terms of reference of the inquiry to recommend appropriate corrective action which may include disciplinary action where there’s misconduct. It is the SABC view, that due process must be followed when there is evidence of transgression of the SABC’s policies.”

The report further says that Motsoeneng issued instructions to Human Resources to dismiss, promote or appoint employees. The report has singled out Nothando Maseko, Sebolelo Ditlhakanyane and Nyana Molete.

However, Motsoeneng questions the impartiality of the report and says he does not regret empowering women at the SABC. “There’s nothing wrong about the appointment of Nothando Maseko. In any case I don’t apologise for putting women on top at the SABC because that is what I was seeking to do.”

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