On 9 November 2023 the following Board was elected by the SOS membership:
Bongani ka Mthembu (R2K)
Bongani is the R2K Gauteng Provincial Coordinator, and member of R2K’s NWG since 2019. He has a passion for community development and social justice. He joined PASO as a Grade 8 student in Sebokeng (1994). He co-founded and chaired the South African Unemployed Youth Forum (2004). He was Organiser for the Sedibeng Social Development Youth Forum and Regional Chair of the Vaal Anti-Privatisation Forum (2006). He facilitated the establishment of Westside Park Community Crisis Committee (2011). In R2K he has a community engagement focus on communication, participatory democracy and the Right2Protest.
Pearl Munonde (SASFED)
Pearl is Co-Chair of the South African Screen Federation (SASFED) and Board member of DFMI. She has been in the TV industry for 21 years. She started as Script Co-ordinator and Translator for Soul City Series 3-5, and moved on to Script Development and Production Co-ordination. She is an accomplished Producer and Line Producer, having produced content for broadcasters including the SABC, Mnet, Mzansi Magic and Etv. Pearl has engaged in training and mentoring young female filmmakers for over 10 years, and owns her own company, NwaChasiya Media.
Samkelo Mokhine (FXI) (Chairperson)
Samkelo is the Executive Director of the Freedom of Expression Institute (FXI). He studied education and law. He left a senior management role in the legal expenses insurance industry to head Siyakhula Trust and the Siyakhula Education and Training Institute, before moving to FXI. He has served on the boards of the Legal Expenses Insurance Southern Africa pension fund, the Johannesburg Community Legal Centre, the Southern Africa Centre for Torture Survivors, and Amnesty International Southern Africa. He is currently Chair of Amnesty International's global Nominations Committee.
Sesi Makhanthisa (CFE)
Sesi is the Operations Manager for CFE. She has more than 10 years’ experience in business management, and has knowledge and experience of multiple departments in various functions. She holds a Project Management Certificate from the University of Johannesburg. Her expertise spans business administration and planning, and she has a non-governmental and solutions-orientated approach to driving business growth.
Siphiwe Hlabangane (IPO)
Siphiwe is an experienced TV producer and actor. He has worked with a number of leading TV production companies and NPO’s in Southern Africa including Quizzical Pictures, Stained Glass TV, Tulinane Entertainment (Windhoek), Young and Able, Oxfam GB and Heartlines. Since 2016 he has focused on furthering his expertise in TV production. Recently he produced the second season of Lingashoni (1Magic telenovela), Savage Beauty (Netflix series) and The Wife (Showmax telenovela).
Thandi Smith (MMA) (Deputy Chairperson)
Thandi has worked for Media Monitoring Africa for about nine years. Her media studies Master’s dissertation examined issues of universal access in South Africa’s digital migration. She is now Head of Programmes, having previously headed the Policy and Quality, with a focus on issues including media policy, regulation, digital rights, internet governance, and quality journalism. She has a keen interest in research in new media, internet governance and media law.
Uyanda Siyotula (National Coordinator)
Uyanda is the SOS Coalition as National Coordinator. She has a keen interest in media freedom, policy, digital media and media law. She has experience in lecturing media studies and brings to the organisation a dynamic and fresh approach to strategy, policy engagement and organisational operations. Uyanda is committed to joining forces with media personnel, the sector and all institutions governing the public media sector to ensure advancement of public service media and strengthening of the public broadcasters, the SABC.
William Bird (MMA)
William is the Director of Media Monitoring Africa (MMA). He studied drama and film, and worked in TV before starting part time monitoring for the Media Monitoring Project (now MMA). He was appointed an Ashoka fellow in 2009 and a Linc Fellow in 2010 for his work on children’s participation in the media. He oversaw data analysis of the Global Media Monitoring Project. His knowledge of media monitoring and commitment to deepening democracy in South Africa and the continent have brought him and MMA international recognition.