New Comms minister could be overstepping powers in SABC retrenchment saga - SOS

The civil society group SOS Coalition has warned the new Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams that she may be acting unlawfully by meddling in SABC affairs.

According to ‘City Press’ reports, Ndabeni-Abrahams has taken on the SABC board over its planned retrenchments.

The publication claims the minister threatened to report the board to President Cyril Ramaphosa and Parliament if it doesn't put an end to the retrenchments.

The public broadcaster is facing major financial woes and intends on retrenching 981 permanent staff and 1200 freelancers.

Also read: Unions to protest against retrenchments at SABC

The SOS Coalition's Kate Skinner say giving the SABC board instructions on operational matters is not part of her mandate.

She explains that the Broadcasting Act clearly states that the board controls the affairs of the corporation.

Ndabeni-Abrahams should be focusing on helping the SABC with funding and financing issues, instead of overstepping, Skinner advises.

My sense is that she's throwing her weight around in a way that is in fact illegal.

Kate Skinner, SOS Coalition co-ordinator

She's not supposed to be telling the board what to do, in terms of operational issues.

Kate Skinner, SOS Coalition co-ordinator

Given that the SABC is in such dire financial straits, it seems to be a strange move on her part to say the SABC can't retrench.

Kate Skinner, SOS Coalition co-ordinator

The way she is handling this seems to be totally illegal.

Kate Skinner, SOS Coalition co-ordinator

The board controls the affairs of the corporation.

Kate Skinner, SOS Coalition co-ordinator

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