REPORT: Shortlisting of SABC Board Candidates

Published On March 25, 2015 | By SOS Coordinator | Independence & Accountability

The SOS Coalition was in Parliament, yesterday, where the SABC Board Shortlist was decided. Here’s what happened.

EFF’s late submissions

The process of the SABC board nominations began with a meeting of the subcommittee of the Portfolio committee on Communications. The meeting opened with the unusual presence of EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu in the place of committee member Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, who was unable to attend the day’s meeting. Shivambu’s presence at the meeting led to a exchange between Communications chair and the EFF MP. The chair noted that the EFF had not either submitted its list of nominations for the SABC board or followed the proper protocol for ‘subbing’ MPs at committee meetings. This meant that Shivambu would not be able to take part in the meeting as a committee member, he insisted that the EFF wanted to make several points surrounding verifying the qualifications of those nominated for SABC board position. This quickly came ot naught as the chair refused to here Shivambu’s excuses and he exited the room for another portfolio meeting soon afterwards.

The Nominations Process.

The meeting began with a debate about whether media and observers could be present, it was eventually concluded that media and observers would not be present for the part of the meeting in which the questions for candidates would be formulated. Following this, every MP present was then given the opportunity to nominate two names, the intention of this was to come up with a list of 5 final names for the next stage of the process. Eventually the committee came up with a shortlist of 6 names

  1. Jennifer Irish-Qobosheane
  2. Keabetswe Modimoeng
  3. Lumko Mtimde
  4. Ashwin Hirjee Trikamjee
  5. Ntombizandile Lesame
  6. Saskia Hickey

Gavin Davis of the Democratic Alliance (DA), raised an objection to the nomination of Lumko Mtimde on the grounds he had previously been in favour of appointing a media tribunal to keep tabs on journalists. This in Davis’s eyes made him unsuitable as he was hostile to the constitutional mandates that are the duty of the SABC and freedom of expression in general. The chair then raised an HR issue concerning non-receipt of proof Mtimde’s qualifications, thereby disqualifying him from the nominations process.

Interviews have been scheduled for 02 April 2015.

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About The Author

Duduetsang is an avid digital media lover and lifelong scholar who is fascinated by the dynamic media space. Duduetsang had her formal training in television journalism at the University currently known as Rhodes, and has various experiences in broadcast media production and corporate communications. She completed her MBA in Media Management at Cardiff University. Her activist discontents include socio-economic and gender based inequality and sexual violence while her intellectual interests lie in media strategy, policy and development in the convergent, digital era, especially in the African context. She joined SOS as a Project Coordinator and recently took over as the National Coordinator.

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