SABC ups the ante, takes Motsoeneng matter to ConCourt

The SABC will approach the highest court in the land over the suspension of its COO.

FILE. SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s supporters outside court on 18 September 2015. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has upped the ante in an increasingly convoluted legal battle involving its Chief Operating Officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.

The public broadcaster has announced it intends approaching the highest court in the land to appeal an order compelling it to suspend Motsoeneng, pending the outcome of a disciplinary process.

The order is also in line with what Public Protector Thuli Madonsela instructed the SABC board to do last year, after she investigated the broadcaster.

The SABC has instructed lawyers to lodge an urgent appeal with the Constitutional Court.

This follows the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein confirming Motsoeneng should be suspended.

At the same time, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has threatened to file contempt of court papers if the SABC COO isn't suspended.

This legal battle began last year when the DA launched a two-part application in the Western Cape High Court, to have Motsoeneng suspended from his post, in light of the Public Protector's probe into governance failures at the SABC.

Madonsela had instructed the public broadcaster's board to take disciplinary action against Motsoeneng for improper conduct and misrepresenting his qualifications, among others.

The DA is also challenging the validity of the decision to permanently appoint him as COO.

This issue will be argued in the High Court next week.