Committee recommends Tshabalala's removal

This recommendation can only be ratified by the National Assembly when it resumes next year.

FILE: SABC board chairperson Zandile Ellen Tshabalala. Picture: SABC.

CAPE TOWN - Parliament's Communications Portfolio Committee has agreed unanimously that South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) board chairperson Zandile Ellen Tshabalala be removed from her post.

Because this recommendation can only be ratified by the National Assembly when it resumes next year, the committee is also recommending that Tshabalala be suspended from her post in the meantime.

The inquiry into whether or not Tshabalala lied about her qualifications finally went ahead today after repeated delays.

Tshabalala was not present and on the basis of the evidence, the committee found that she was guilty of misrepresenting her qualifications and lying about this under oath.

A not-guilty plea on the part of Tshabalala was entered in her absence.

The University of South Africa (Unisa)'s Jan van Wyk testified that while Tshabalala had registered as a student, she received neither a BComm nor a post graduate degree in labour relations as she has claimed.

The committee has now decided Tshabalala must be removed from her post.

That recommendation has to be ratified by the National Assembly before being sent to President Jacob Zuma to give it effect.

In the meantime, the committee wants Tshabalala to be suspended from her post.

That request will be sent to National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete this week.

Tshabalala will have 14 working days to respond to the committee's findings.

Earlier, her lawyer Michael Tilney told Members of Parliament (MPs) she had applied for leave to appeal a recent High Court decision that ruled the inquiry could go ahead.

Tilney argued that the inquiry should once again be postponed pending the outcome of Tshabalala's appeal.

The committee heard evidence from the Unisa on the qualifications Tshabalala claimed she received from the institution.