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SABC board chair: If you can pay a car guard, why not pay your TV licence?

The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) board has confirmed it has asked the Communications Minister for a TV licence tariff hike.

Bongumusa Makhathini, SABC board chairperson at the commission of inquiry into editorial independence on 5 August 2019. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

PRETORIA - The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) board has confirmed it has asked the Communications Minister for a TV licence tariff hike.

While this has not been approved, officials said those who refused to pay their licences affected the corporation’s finances.

This was among the submissions in Parliament on Tuesday, where the public broadcaster’s leadership addressed the Communication portfolio committee.

The board’s deputy chair, Mamodupi Mohlala-Mulaudzi, said they were trying to turn around the growing trend of people not paying their fees.

“It started gradually in 2015 and it spiked in 2016. The non-compliance started to increase.”

Board chair Bongumusa Makhathini said a fee hike would not be unreasonable.

“About 72 cents a day cannot really justify us saying that TV licences are too expensive. I mean, if you’re paying a guy who looks after your car more than 72 cents, what about the SABC, who gives you 19 radio stations and five TV stations?”

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