Wednesday, September 12, 2007


Well, it seems that the new SABC Board will support Snuki Zikalala.

FIX THE FXI believes that Dene Smuts's assessment is over-optimistic. Dene Smuts said: “You can see the hand of Luthuli House in those appointments, but there are enough good people on the board to counteract the Luthuli House agenda.”

Until Zikalala is sacked the SABC will remain the ANCB (African National Congress Broadcasting). Perhaps it should get with the times and jettison the old "apartheid" nomenclature ? if place names can be changed why can't it apply to the SABC?

ANC backs Qunta, dumps Ginwala for SABC board
Brendan Boyle Published:Sep 12, 2007 (THE TIMES)

TRUSTED: Christine Qunta
Hand of Luthuli House seen in nominations.

ANC MPs rejected former Speaker of Parliament Frene Ginwala’s bid for a seat on the SABC board, but handed controversial lawyer Christine Qunta a second term.

Parliament’s portfolio committee on communications made 12 nominations from a list of 142 names yesterday , returning six former members and adding to the board a prominent businesswoman and President Thabo Mbeki’s former spokesman.

The board, which has played a key role in positioning the state- owned public broadcaster as a consistent supporter of the ANC , must be formally approved by the national assembly on Thursday. It will serve for up to five years from January.

It is now up to Mbeki to appoint a chairman and deputy chairman of the SABC board from the portfolio committee’s nominations.

Ginwala, who declined to take up her seat in parliament after she was dumped as Speaker, was not supported by her own party, though several opposition members thought she would be a useful addition to the board.

She is a trustee of the Reuters news agency, sitting on a panel that guards the editorial objectivity of the company.

The current chairman of the SABC board, Eddie Funde, was one of 37 candidates selected for an interview, but withdrew from the process.

Speculation among some MPs and candidates was that he had been told that he would not be reappointed as chairman.

Dene Smuts, the DA’ s communications spokesman, said the selection included eight people on her party’s own short list. She said: “This is definitely a better board.”

Smuts said the DA had opposed the appointment of Qunta, of former member Andile Mbeki and of Gloria Serobe.

Smuts said: “You can see the hand of Luthuli House in those appointments, but there are enough good people on the board to counteract the Luthuli House agenda.”

Qunta has supported SABC news chief Snuki Zikalala, who banned a number of commentators from the state airwaves and has accused the commercial print media of a racist campaign against the broadcaster.

Serobe is a shareholder in the Elephant Consortium, which owns a major stake in Telkom, which is bidding for a broadcasting licence that would allow it to compete with the SABC.

The candidacy of Mbeki’s former spokesman, Bheki Khumalo, now a general manager at Sasol, was supported by the ANC and DA, but not by the IFP.

Khumalo has written many articles supporting Mbeki recently, but said during the selection interviews he would be impartial on the board.

Members reappointed to the board are Alison Gilwald, Fadila Lagadien, Andile Mbeki, Khanyi Mkhonza, Qunta and Ashwin Trikamjee.

The new members are Nadia Bulbulia, a former broadcasting regulator, Mpumalanga 2010 World Cup chief Desmond Golding, Khumalo, Serobe, Pansy Tlakula, chief electoral officer of the IEC, and advertising veteran and banker Peter Vundla.

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