6 October 2017

South Africa: SABC Bowing to Pressure From the ANC About Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

press release

The DA is gravely concerned about an announcement by the Acting CEO of the SABC, Nomsa Philiso, suggesting that the SABC has bowed to political pressure from the ANC.

At a press conference yesterday Philiso announced that the SABC had instituted disciplinary action against a staff member for references to ANC presidential hopeful, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma as "Mini Zuma" and "Zuma ex-wife".

The disciplinary action follows press statements issued by the ANC Women's League complaining about what in the first instance, appears to be an error, and in the second, a factual reference to Dlamini-Zuma's marital status. Neither require disciplinary action and are indicative of a SABC that is taking unwarranted and unnecessary disciplinary action against its own to please the ANC and its factions.

It is worrying that the SABC has reverted to bowing to political pressure from the ANC, a situation that had been arrested following Parliament's Ad Hoc Committee on the SABC Inquiry and the appointment of the interim board.

It is becoming apparent that there is more to the delay in the appointment of the permanent SABC board than meets the eye. There is no denying that the conditions at the SABC are indeed ripe for capture, and our concerns in this regard are not unfounded.

The appointment of the permanent board can no longer be delayed.

Every hour that it is without a board to oversee management and act as a vanguard against political pressure, is an opportunity for the SABC to be re-captured, and decisions made without adequate oversight by a board.

The SABC's management will be Parliament next week, the DA will have questions about this, and other developments at the public broadcaster that will require clear, and full answers.

Phumzile Van Damme MP

DA Shadow Minister of Communications

South Africa

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