The Minister of Communications, Ms Nomvula Mokonyane, has noted the judgement of Matojane J in the matter of SOS Support Public Broadcasting Coalition & Others v The SABC, the Minister of Communications and Others regarding the Minister’s powers to appoint executive members of the SABC.
At the outset, the Minister regrets the non-appearance of the department’s legal representatives at court as this borders on unethical conduct and disrespect for the court.
The Minister has requested the Office of the State Attorney who has taken full responsibility for the non-appearance, to provide her with a full report for such.
Notwithstanding such non-appearance, the directive of the Minister upon her appointment has been not to pursue any further litigation (as initiated by her predecessor) relating to the matter pursuant to legal advice, but instead focus her energy together with the Board, towards the rebuilding and repositioning the SABC as a true public broadcaster that is able to deliver on its public mandate which is the critical task at hand.
The decision of the Minister was taken in the spirit of good governance, mutual trust and cooperation which currently underpins the relationship between the Minister and the board of the SABC as provided in the Broadcasting Act.
The SABC board continues to consult the Minister on the various matters including the appointment of Executive Members. The mutual trust and cooperation between the Minister and the board of the SABC has enabled the board to appoint a Group Chief Executive Officer and a Chief Financial Officer who will be commencing their duties in due course.
“Our focus is to ensure that we build a financially sustainable, professional and leading public broadcaster in content and technology that will be an asset of the people of South Africa and a source of information, news and knowledge for citizens” said Minister Mokonyane.
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