SABC advertises Hlaudi’s old job as hearings set to begin

2017-05-17 09:19 - Matthew le Cordeur and Jan Gerber
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Hlaudi Motsoeneng (Elizabeth Sejake, City Press)

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Cape Town – The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) on Sunday advertised the role of chief operating officer (COO), following Hlaudi Motsoeneng's removal from the acting role in 2016.

Motsoeneng was removed as COO after the Supreme Court of Appeal in September rejected his bid to appeal the Western Cape High Court’s November 2015 ruling declaring his appointment irrational and setting it aside.

The findings included that he lied about his qualifications, that he purged the SABC of staff and promoted people and raised salaries without following the correct procedures.

The advert for COO in Sunday newspapers called for applicants with a relevant post-graduate qualification. Motsoeneng does not have a matric certificate, meaning he would not qualify to apply for the role.  

The adverts appeared three days before Motsoeneng is set to face two disciplinary hearings, which are set to start on Wednesday.

READ: Motsoeneng's hearing to take place on Wednesday

The first hearing regards his personal media conference that he held on April 19, while the second hearing relates to the public protector's string of findings against him.

Other roles advertised by the SABC included that of chief executive officer (which requires a master’s degree), a chief audit executive (which requires the candidate to be a chartered accountant) and a group executive of radio (which requires a bachelor’s degree in broadcasting).

Acting SABC CEO James Aguma admitted that the SABC was facing a financial crisis last week, in stark contrast to his and other SABC officials' previous statements to the committee on financial matters.

The turnaround in his viewpoint occurred after an ad hoc committee of the National Assembly made damning findings against the SABC.

Since then, a new interim board has been appointed and there is a new communications minister (Ayanda Dlodlo), while Motsoeneng has been ordered by a court not involve himself in the running of the SABC.

Following his removal as COO, Motsoeneng was appointed group executive for corporate affairs, but this was set aside in in December by a court, which ruled he could not go to work in any capacity at the SABC.

This ruling was in force until the findings of a new disciplinary inquiry or a court review of parts of former public protector Thuli Madonsela’s report on his conduct, which was released in February 2014.

Dlodlo told Parliament last week that the SABC will make a loss of R509m for the fourth quarter of the financial year, which ended on March 31.  She pointed out that this was an unaudited figure.

READ: SABC can't meet its financial obligations - Minister

As such, the SABC and the Department of Communications are planning to make a formal request to National Treasury for funding to help the embattled broadcaster pay its bills, said SABC interim board chairperson Khanyisile Kweyama.

The broadcaster would be looking for a guarantee from Treasury of “close to R1bn”, said Kweyama, who has been interim chair since March.

READ: SABC needs mega bailout

Motsoeneng has been blamed for the SABC's financial woes and the interim board is now cleaning up his mess, according to a report in City Press this Sunday.

For example, the SABC has 164 people working in its TV licence department, yet the corporation has been outsourcing TV licence fee collection to a company that has been underperforming.

This is one of the contracts that the newly appointed interim board will be terminating and referring to the authorities for a forensic investigation, City Press cited in a story entitled New SABC board tackles costly Motsoeneng mess.

Motsoeneng's old job advertised (in Sunday Times):

Infographic: What Motsoeneng earns

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