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SABC board wants Mahlati gone

2012-09-12 11:25
Cape Town – The SABC board has "degenerated into serious dysfunctionality," chairperson Dr Ben Ngubane has admitted to parliament, pleading with the government to remove board member Cawekazi Mahlati.

According to previous reports, and again reiterated by Ngubane to parliament's portfolio committee on communications on Tuesday, Cawekazi Mahlati is allegedly a highly disruptive force in SABC board meetings and beyond.

In August both the SABC board and the Communication Workers' Union (CWU) indicated they want Mahlati gone – both passed a motion of no confidence in her.

Mahlati allegedly tried to obtain tenders from the public broadcaster according to the SABC board and the CWU.

"It's a sad matter this; we thought we had turned the corner at the SABC, but the SABC board has degenerated into serious dysfunctionality, because one board member continuously attacks the company secretary and continuously attacks other board members," Ngubane told parliament.

Serious breaches

Ngubane said that Mahlati campaigned for the removal of the acting chief operating officer (COO) Hlaudi Motsoeneng because he was blocking the processing of a tender she appeared to have had an interest in.

"The minutes would show that this board member was punting Atos as a supplier, which would have cost us R500m outside of proper tender procedures," said Ngubane.

"There have been serious breaches of order at board meetings, so another two sets of votes of no confidence [in Mahlati] were taken," said Ngubane.

"This board is going to be highly dysfunctional as long as this member continues to be given the freedom to do what she wants," he said.

He told parliament that the SABC board unanimously wants Mahlati gone and for parliament's portfolio committee on communications to suspend her and for the matter to be investigated.

Mahlati couldn't be reached for comment.

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