MMA seeks to challenge President’s powers in appointing SABC Board

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Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) says it will look for ways to challenge the President’s powers in appointing a SABC Board, after consulting its legal team.

The media watchdog was commenting on whether or not it would abandon its Constitutional Court bid which is seeking to force President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint the SABC board.

Ramaphosa announced the appointment of the board on Tuesday almost four months after the National Assembly had approved the list of candidates to serve on it.

Media Monitoring Africa Director William Bird says, “I think there are some key issues around the powers of the President, and we (are) anxious to look at how we can prevent something like that from happening again. You know, you’ve had six months without a board, and while it’s a relief for everyone, I’m sure the senior executives are looking forward to having the first time of solid night’s sleep in as many months. It’s not really something that is fair on the employees of the SABC and it’s something that has placed the SABC in a precarious position.”

Below is the full interview with William Bird:

Parliament happy with Board’s finalisation

Parliament says it is happy that the SABC Board process has now been finalised, adding that the public broadcaster plays a critical role in society.

The announcement comes a week after Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula informed Ramaphosa that the National Assembly resolution on the SABC Board candidates remained in place and was lawful.

Earlier, Ramaphosa sought legal clarity on the additional three names that were submitted, in addition to the 12 recommended candidates.

Parliament’s spokesperson Moloto Mothapo says, “We appreciate the finalisation of the process by the President. The SABC plays a critical public service in society. And its stability and leadership are quite important.”

“As Parliament, we do respect the doctrine of separation of powers as well as the principles of co-operative governance and that the President has to conduct due diligence in considering Parliamentary recommendations. We are glad that as Parliament we were able to provide the President with all the necessary clarification to ensure that this process is completed.”