Parly committee ‘notes’ SABC move to appeal court ruling on Motsoeneng

The court found Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s appointment was unlawful and unconstitutional and that he should face a fresh disciplinary hearing.

FILE: SABC executive Hlaudi Motsoeneng. Picture: Kgothatso Mogale/EWN

CAPE TOWN – Parliament's Communications committee says it has ‘noted with interest’ the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) decision to appeal a High Court ruling in which the appointment of Hlaudi Motsoeneng's was set aside.

In December, the Western Cape High Court ruled that Motsoeneng must be removed from the position of SABC group executive of corporate affairs.

The court found the former chief operations officer’s appointment was unlawful and unconstitutional and that he should face a fresh disciplinary hearing.

This week, the same court heard an application by the SABC to appeal the ruling setting aside Motsoeneng's appointment in his new position as group executive of corporate affairs.

In a statement on Friday, Parliament's communications committee says it will ask to be briefed in detail by Communications Minister Faith Muthambi about the reasons behind the appeal.

It further states it had hoped the expensive and protracted legal battle had been concluded.

The court is expected to rule on the application next week.

Committee chairperson Humphries Maxegwana says they were only alerted about the latest development on Friday morning.

“Immediately what we have to do is to communicate with the minister because as the shareholder, in the absence of the board, she is supposed to know what is going on at the SABC.”

The Democratic Alliance’s James Selfe says the SABC's legal team has argued that Motsoeneng's appointment was a management decision--and was not an exercise of public power.

But he disagrees, saying that the organisation is a public entity.

“A position of that seniority and one which has been the subject of the Public Protector’s report and a series of adverse findings was clearly something that was an exercise of public power.”

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)