Ben Ngubane, chairman of the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) and Thami ka Plaatjie, his deputy, have resigned.
Siya Qoza, spokesperson for the Department of Communications (DoC), was quoted by SABC radio news as saying Jacob Zuma should make a decision as to whether to accept the resignations or not.
“Mrs Pule (minister of communications) has been quite concerned about the going-ons at the board at the SABC,” said Qoza today.
Qoza said further: “In terms of the process… it will depend on what the president says and what happens to the SABC board. It will basically be determined by whether the president accepts or declines the resignations.”
The SABC in February announced Hlaudi Motsoeneng, acting chief operating officer, had been “released of his duties” and replaced by Mike Simluma, head of SABC radio news and current affairs. According the the Communication Workers Union (CWU), Motsoeneng was illegally removed from his post.
However, a newspaper report emerged quoting Ngubane as staying Motsoeneng had been reinstated and that the decision was made by Plaatjie, but the SABC confirmed the contrary, saying no such reinstatement had occurred.
The SABC board released a media statement shortly afterwards, saying “the report… is regrettable as neither the chairman nor the deputy chairman… have the power or authority to unilaterally change a board [decision].”
The SABC board confirmed it will seek clarity from both Ngubane and Plaatje with regards to the newspaper report and Dina Pule has requested for parliament to “urgently” review the SABC board.