Please find attached a soundbite in English by DA Shadow Minister of Communications, Phumzile Van Damme MP.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has today officially written to Parliament indicating that he has accepted the resignations of the four SABC board members and requested that the vacancies be urgently filled.
Yesterday Parliament’s Announcements, Tablings, and Committee (ATC) report stated:
A letter dated 6 December 2018 has been received from the President of the Republic, Mr Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa
(i) informing the National Assembly that he has, in terms of section 15 (2) of the Broadcasting Act, 1999 (Act No. 4 of 1999), accepted the resignations of Ms Khanyisile Kweyama, Mr John Matisonn, Mr Krish Naidoo and Mr Mathatha Tsedu as members of the Board of the South African Broadcasting Corporation Limited; and
(ii) requesting the National Assembly to urgently begin the process of filling the vacancies that have resulted from the resignations, as provided for in the Act.
The matter has been referred to the Portfolio Committee on Communications. We have today written to the committee chairperson, Prof Hlengiwe Mkhize, to speed up the process of filling the new vacancies (along with four previous ones).
The filling of four vacancies that existed due to the resignations of Rachel Kalidass, Victor Rambau, Febe Potgieter-Gqubule and the withdrawal of Nomvuyiso Batyi has already been advertised.
Another advertisement must now be issued with the same deadlines of nominations closing on 21 December 2018, so that the committee can interview for all eight vacancies in January 2019.
There are concerns that the board is currently inquorate and will, therefore, be dissolved, but in terms of the Broadcasting Act of 1999, this is not the case. A board can only be dissolved following a parliamentary inquiry. We, therefore, plead on board members who remain to stay on the board and provide stability to SABC until the vacancies are filled.
It is crucial that the vacancies are urgently filled as stability in the SABC is imperative. This board should be filled with individuals who not only have the requisite experience and qualifications but are also committed to protecting the SABC’s independence and are above reproach. The DA will work hard to ensure that such candidates are recommended to the president for the SABC board.