SABC Interim Board needs to ensure that the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) delivers on its TORs

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SABC Interim Board needs to ensure that the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) delivers on its TORs

The SOS Coalition welcomes the news regarding the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) Proclamation, which has been awaiting the President’s signature for months. On the 25th of August, President Jacob Zuma released a statement announcing that he had signed the Proclamation that would authorise the SIU to investigate some of the financial and governance irregularities that have put the SABC in crisis.

According to the Presidency, the Proclamation will, amongst other things, allow the SIU to investigate the following:

  1. The procurement of, or contracting for goods, works or services by or on behalf of the SABC from various companies or service providers and payment made in respect thereof in a manner that was not fair, transparent, competitive and equitable or cost effective.
  2. Any undisclosed or unauthorised interest that certain members of the personnel of the SABC may have had with regard to contractors, suppliers or service providers who submitted bids for work or did business with the SABC; or contractors awarded by or on behalf of the SABC.

This SIU investigation is a response to Ad Hoc committee’s recommendation for the Interim Board to investigate amongst other things, fruitless and wasteful expenditure at the SABC. In short, it is the beginning of a long journey to get a public broadcaster that works in the interests of a South African audience, and not just the interests of a corrupt few.

Furthermore, the findings of this investigation could help us prevent the possible capture of our public broadcaster by another Hlaudi Motsoeneng, while also ensuring that those who have abused their roles in the public broadcaster are brought to book. This is a small, but necessary victory which could only be achieved because we all decided to take a stand and to reclaim our SABC.

While being mindful of the fact the Interim Board has very limited time left at the SABC, we would like to strongly urge the board to to ensures that the SIU delivers on its terms of reference (TOR), and once the investigation has been concluded, publish and report back to the South African public the final report of the SIU investigation, as well SABC’s internal forensic audit unit.

Interviews for the new SABC board are currently underway. If you would like to follow the process or catch up on what the excitement, visit SABC Yethu‘s website, follow us on Twitter @soscoalition, like our Facebook page “SOS Coalition.” Share your thoughts with us, and tell us what would make the SABC better for YOU!

About SOS:
The SOS Coalition represents a broad spectrum of civil society stakeholders committed to the broadcasting of quality, diverse, citizen-orientated public-interest programming aligned to the goals of the South African Constitution. The Coalition includes a number of trade union federations including COSATU and FEDUSA, a number of independent unions including BEMAWU and 
MWASA; independent film and TV production sector organisations including the South African Screen Federation (SASFED); a host of NGOs and CBOs including the Freedom of Expression Institute (FXI), Media Monitoring Africa (MMA), SECTION27 and a number of academics and freedom of expression activists.

For more information contact:
Duduetsang Makuse (SOS Coordinator) / +2760 911 5889

Thandi Smith (SOS Chairperson) /+2773 470 7306