MMA not satisfied with President’s response on SABC Board

William Bird
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Media Monitoring Africa ( MMA) says they will issue President Cyril Ramaphosa with a lawyer’s letter demanding that he appoints the new SABC Board.

Lawyers for MMA and the SOS Support Broadcasting Coalition had given Ramaphosa until the end of business today to appoint the board or face legal action.

MMA Director William Bird says they received a response from the President which merely stated that a new board would be appointed soon.

Bird says the President should understand the importance of an effectively run public broadcaster that is able to fully deliver on its mandate before South Africans go to the polls in May.

“These are crises that are being deliberately engineered in order to make sure that the SABC is unstable in the lead up to an election period. Without a board being able to quorate, it means that there’s certain decisions that the SABC can’t take and certain things that the SABC cannot move forward on. If you go into an election without a board, it may be that at the end of the election someone may challenge the result of that election. On the basis of saying the biggest public broadcaster in South Africa, we believe, they may have been biased – because they didn’t have the quorate board to take certain decisions. Our belief is that there’s clearly some kind of political agenda by forces to try and make sure that they’re able to have some leverage over the SABC.”

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