SABC’s funding model blamed for broadcaster’s financial woes

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Steve Swart, the  African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) member of the Communications and Digital Technologies Committee,  says the funding model is at the centre of the South African Broadcasting Corporation’s (SABC) financial woes.

Swart was speaking in the National Assembly after the committee tabled the 2019/2020 annual report and financial statements of the SABC, South African Post Office and two other entities.

The National Assembly consider the committees report into the four entities.

This comes after the SOEs only submitted their 2019/2020 financial statements after the committee had already tabled its Budgetary Review and Recommendations Report on the department and other entities to the National Assembly.

Swart says the funding model should be addressed as a matter of urgency.

“The Funding model is at the heart of a lot of the SABC’s financial concerns,” says Swart.

He says the funding model issue was raised previously in the Ad Hoc Committee report in 2017. He says the report was accepted unanimously by  Parliament.

“So we from the ACDPs perspective, [we] would urge that the funding model is addressed as a matter of urgency to improve the liquidity position of the SABC,” says Swart.


EFF on  SABC’s content

Meanwhile, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) MP, Vuyani Pambo says the SABC failed to generate revenue in the 2019/2020 financial year, while Multi-Choice has enriched itself through public broadcasters content and advertising space for free.

“Instead of making strategic investments in broadcasting and advertising space, maximising successful local content through exports to foreign markets and making strategic deals with paid to view broadcasting entities for local content, the leadership of the SABC has been at pains to rationalise the firing of workers as a way of increasing revenue,” says Pambo.

“That is why the entity has lost over R511 million in  2019/2020 financial year. The parasitic relationship with Multi-Choice due to Independent Communications Authority of South Africa’s (Icasa) maskery regulations, which compelled the SABC to offer its three channels to all subscription broadcasters at no cost, has resulted in the growth of entities such as Multi-Choice on the back of SABC’s successful programmes and advertising space,” says Pambo.



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