Meddling Muthambi at it again

Communications Minister, Faith Muthambi’s blatant attempt to go undermine the authority of the new SABC interim board, in order to delay it from performing its duties, will not go unchallenged.
Today, the SABC secretariat handed members of the interim board letters – during its meeting with the Communications Committee and hundreds of SABC staffers – indicating that they cannot begin their work until security clearance has been granted, and signed off by her office.
The Minister does not have the authority, legal or otherwise, to prevent the duly appointed members of the SABC interim board from meeting with representatives of Parliament – to whom it accounts, by law.
Moreover, the Broadcasting Act does not require the security vetting of the SABC’s interim board, and lists short timelines for both its nomination and appointment so that the public broadcaster is not without a board for a long period of time.
The SABC has been without a full constituted board since September 2016, and further delays can most certainly not be afforded. The Minister’s attempt at a filibuster of the work of the SABC interim board is only at odds with the spirit of the Broadcasting Act, but also the Office of the President.
The President approved, by signed letter, the appointment of the interim board on 27 March 2017. The appointment letter signed by the President did not require that members of the interim board be security vetted, and must be taken as the final word in this regard.
It is not surprising that Minister Muthambi seeks to delay the work of the board, as it is likely to undercover, in its investigations, her further complicity in the collapse of good governance at the SABC.
We also strongly caution her against attempting to strong-arm the interim board like she did with the previous board. During the Ad Hoc committee on the SABC, testimony was given by former members of the board of how she interfered in the board in order to force the illegal appointment of the former COO of the SABC, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
The DA looks forward to meeting with the Minister when Parliament reconvenes, where she will have to account for this, and other actions.
The SABC interim board has a short period of time within which to start the process of cleaning up the SABC. First order of business is a disciplinary inquiry into the fitness of Hlaudi Motsoeneng to hold office.
The inevitable cannot be delayed, we urge the Minister to move aside and let the board do its work.