This release was made available a few moments ago.
1 June 2009
The Minister of Communications Gen Siphiwe Nyanda (Retired) today held his inaugural meeting with the board of the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) in Pretoria.
The meeting served as an opportunity for the minister to meet members of the SABC board and received a briefing on developments at the public broadcaster including its corporate plan.
The board appraised the minister on the recent challenges facing the SABC including the broadcaster’s financial affairs, the current salary negotiations with unions, reported differences between board members and the filling of key vacant positions among them that of Group Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operations Officer and Group Executive: News and Current Affairs.
The minister raised his concerns about the negative public perception on the board and executive management’s ability to give direction to the public broadcaster’s operations.
He reminded the board of the mandate of the SABC to deliver quality broadcasting services to the public as stipulated in the Broadcasting Act as well as the Broadcasting Charter.
Regarding the current salary negotiations between management and unions, the minister was assured that negotiations are currently underway and the SABC management has further reassured the minister that they will work towards reaching an amicable solution with the unions.
It’s important to note that these negotiations are taking place against the background of the current global economic meltdown.
The SABC management also committed to soon meet with the independent producers with a view to resolve issues of non-payment taking into account the cash-flow challenges facing the public broadcaster.
“As a shareholder we are equally not comfortable with the fact that the SABC continues to operate without key senior executives. We urged them to finalise as soon as possible the process of appointing a Group CEO, COO and the head the corporation’s news and current affairs division,” says minister Nyanda.
With regard to the SABC’s corporate plan the ministry, the department and national treasury will continue engaging the SABC with a view to improve the public broadcaster’s financial position including the current cash flow challenges.
With regard to the forthcoming FIFA Confederations Cup and 2010 FIFA World Cup™, the minister is satisfied that the public broadcaster will be able to meet its commitments to FIFA and render a quality broadcasting service to the country and the continent during the two events.
Ministry of Communications
iParioli Office Park
399 Duncan Street
For more information contact: Tiyani Rikhotso on 083 800 9936