The role of the Minister of Communications in the SABC‘s decision-making contributed to a minority of the Public Broadcaster’s board resigning. Those that stayed, according to SABC Chairperson Bongumusa Makhatini, felt they should stay and fight for the independence of the public broadcaster.
Makhatini told the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture that the Board’s decision to retrench workers at the public broadcaster, against the wishes of the Communications Minister, led to the resignation of at least one Board member.
“If you look at the Mathojane judgement, it clearly outlines what is the role of the Board and what is the role of the Minister, and people seem to struggle to get to terms and to accept that SABC is independent and the Board of the SABC is in charge of the affairs of the SABC… and not the Minister. The Minister – yes, through a stakeholder compact – will hold us accountable on certain things. Are we meeting our targets and so forth. She has got enough in the shareholder compact to hold us accountable in terms of the performance of the board and the entity, but in terms of the decisions, that must be left with the Board.”
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