MPs put Muthambi in the hot seat again

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Communications Minister Faith Muthambi answers questions during the ad hoc Parliamentary committee inquiry into the fitness of SABC members to hold office on December 14, 2016 in Cape Town.

PARLIAMENT – Parliament’s portfolio committee on communications is demanding to know why the SABC is appealing a Western Cape High Court ruling that effectively left controversial group executive for corporate affairs Hlaudi Motsoeneng without a job.

In a statement, the committee said the answer must come from Communications Minister Faith Muthambi.

READ: MPs consider Muthambi's culpability in SABC woes

The committee had hoped that the expensive and protracted SABC legal battle was concluded, the statement said.

“Committee chairperson Mr Humphrey Maxegwana said that the committee will ask to be briefed in detail by the Minister of Communications, Faith Muthambi, about reasons behind the appeal.”

The SABC is currently without  a board after several resignations last year. The "last man standing" --  as one judge put it  -- former board chairman Mbulaheni Maguvhe eventually resigned after saying live on television that he would not quit and calling the MPs involved in the SABC inquiry bullies.

The communications committee, tasked with finding an interim five-person board, are not happy with the SABC’s latest move to get Motsoeneng back at the SABC. A court last year ruled Motsoeneng unfit to hold any office at the broadcaster unless a damning report by the public protector was set aside or fresh disciplinary hearings exonerated him from wrongdoing.

MPs want the court ruling to be executed.

"Mr Maxegwana reiterated further that in the absence of a non-executive board at the SABC, it will be interesting for the committee to hear from the minister, as the shareholder representative, why the SABC found it difficult to implement the ruling," the committee said.

Muthambi and the SABC are among those who must respond to a damning draft report by a parliamentary ad-hoc committee that inquired into the the affairs of the broadcaster.

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