SABC's 'Macgyver' Maguvhe must still face the music - political parties
20 December 2016
Johannesburg - Political parties have welcomed SABC chairperson Mbulaheni Maguvhe’s resignation but still want him to face the music for the crisis grippling the public broadcaster.
President Jacob Zuma announced on Monday that he has accepted Maguvhe’s resignation.
Maguvhe had previously refused to step down even though he was the last non-executive board member of the SABC.
Maghuve’s resignation follows what parties have described as his “humiliating” and “frustrating” appearance before the parliamentary adhoc committee on the SABC board’s fitness to hold office.
The ANC said it was regrettable that Maghuve resigned after his failed legal attempt to stop the inquiry. It also slammed his leadership at the SABC as rudderless and disastrous.
Spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said, “It is unfortunate that he decided right at the end to call it quits.
“He must be held accountable for the state of the SABC, including those that led before him. They must account for the collapse of SABC governance, the collapse of leadership, collapse of ethics…collapse of everything at SABC."
ANC Chief whip in Parliament Jackson Mthembu was also scathing, describing Maghuve as a stumbling block to resolving the cooperate governance at SABC.
“It is unfortunate that Prof Maguvhe chose to sacrifice his personal reputation and professional integrity by putting his selfish personal interests ahead of those of South Africans, who are the shareholders of the SABC," Mthembu said in a statement.
Does not absolve him
The Democratic Alliance also wants the parliamentary inquiry to continue its investigations.
It is due to resume its work on January 10.
DA Parliamentary chief whip John Steenhuisen said Maghuve’s resignation does not absolve him of wrong doing.
“It is not the end of the line for Mr Maghuve – those like him and others who have not been proper stewards and not performed their functions properly, need to be held accountable. Resigning does not absolve him of his ... accountability," Steenhuisen told News24.
The UDM said the inquiry should not only focus on Maguvhe but also those the party said had sent him to the public broadcaster to shut down opposition voices.
The party’s deputy president Nqabayomzi Kwankwa labelled him "Mcgyver" for unsuccessfully trying to outwit parliament during his testimony before the inquiry instead of telling the truth.
“It's okay, he must leave – but the people who used Maguvhe as a vanguard with which to fend off attacks and as a political machete with which to unleash attacks at political opponents – have to be exposed, “ Nkwankwa told News24.
He added that Maghuve's testimony revealed that he was unaware of developments and was manipulated during his stay.
The EFF said the SABC’s former Chief Operations Officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng should follow.
Hlaudi must resign
The court ruled that Motsoeneng cannot hold any position pending a disciplinary process or a review of the Public Protector’s report that found he lied about his qualifications.
EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi also agreed that the adhoc committee must continue its work.
“We welcome Maguvhe’s resignation as a step forward in the restoration of the reputation of the SABC. We hope that Hlaudi follows suit.
“Hlaudi must resign so we don’t have the extra job of making him leave the SABC,” Ndlozi said.
All parties say Maguvhe’s resignation paves the way for parliament’s portfolio committee on communication to appoint an interim board.
Mthembu added that the Broadcasting Act might need to be revisited and tightened to ensure that inquorate boards or individuals do not hold such important public institutions to ransom by refusing to resign.
This article first appeared on News24, see here.