Motsoeneng application premature, lawyers say

This comes after the DA applied to the WC High Court to have Motsoeneng’s appointment reviewed.

SABC Operations Chief Hlaudi Motsoeneng. Picture: Supplied.

CAPE TOWN - The bid to have South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Operations Chief Hlaudi Motsoeneng's appointment set aside began with a debate today about whether the application is premature.

The official opposition, the Democratic Alliance (DA), has applied to the Western Cape High Court to have Motsoeneng's appointment reviewed.

Today's hearing is the latest development in a convoluted legal battle that began after the public protector directed the SABC board take appropriate disciplinary action against Motsoeneng for improper conduct, alleged abuse of power and misrepresenting his matric qualification.

Instead of initiating disciplinary steps against Motsoeneng, the board recommended his permanent appointment in July last year.

In court papers, Motsoeneng's lawyers argue the review application is premature because he has yet to face a disciplinary hearing, as directed by the public protector and Western Cape High Court Judge Ashton Schippers.

The SABC has also instructed its legal team to challenge the Schippers judgment in the Constitutional Court.

Judge Dennis Davis asked the DA's counsel Anton Katz today to respond to the argument that the application is premature.

Katz argued that Motseoneng was appointed without the SABC board advertising the position or shortlisting other candidates, which was unlawful.

He went on to say that the board and the communications minister's actions showed they were biased in favour of Motsoeneng.