Madonsela, ANC surprised by SABC COO appointment

Minister Faith Muthambi confirmed Hlaudi Motsoneng would take over the role permanently.

The SABC offices in Auckland Park, Johannesburg. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Both Public Protector Thuli Madonsela and the ANC on Wednesday said the appointment of Hlaudi Motsoeneng to the permanent post of South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Chief Operating Officer (COO) came as a surprise.

Communications Minister Faith Muthambi confirmed overnight that she rubber-stamped the decision of the SABC board to make his appointment permanent.

Madonsela said the SABC should have taken necessary remedial measures against Motsoeneng before appointing him permanently.

Earlier this year, the protector's office released a report in which she recommended that Motsoeneng undergo disciplinary measures for misleading the public about his matric qualification.

She said while her report did not contest Motsoeneng's suitability for the permanent COO position, the public broadcaster should have attempted to complete the disciplinary process.

Madonsela added she was surprised that her recommendation had not been seen through.

"I'm totally surprised because that's not how I expect the state to be run. I've been promised an action plan and I'm still waiting. I've been asked since the middle of March to give extensions to the SABC board."

ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said the party didn't know Motsoeneng was about to get the job.

"Nobody told us about the appointment. Anybody who is appointed to a position must meet the basic requirements."

Muthambi said Motsoeneng's appointment will bring certainty and stability to the broadcaster.

In a statement released on the SABC's website, Muthambi said confidence had been restored in the SABC.

She added three SABC boards recognised the good work the COO had done and her predecessors also agreed with them.