Hlaudi Motsoeneng TV show

Hlaudi Motsoeneng / Image via Facebook

SABC: “We are trying to recover millions from Hlaudi Motsoeneng”

Hlaudi Motsoeneng claims that “SABC was finally healthy” when he left it.

Hlaudi Motsoeneng TV show

Hlaudi Motsoeneng / Image via Facebook

SABC board chairperson, Bongumusa Makathini has revealed that the public broadcaster is pursuing legal avenues to compel its former boss, Hlaudi Motsoeneng, to pay back the millions he allegedly siphoned.

The Commission of Inquiry into Editorial Interference at the SABC concluded its work and published a report on Monday, detailing the trauma some of the workers have experienced at the public broadcaster over the years.

At the centre of the commission was Motsoeneng’s role in pillaging SABC to a point where it became one of many state-owned entities plunged in a financial rut.

While the report made findings against key figures such as Faith Muthambi and former board chairperson, Ellen Tshabalala, Motsoeneng, it was revealed, still owes SABC a heap of millions for his involvement in alleged embezzlement that allegedly occurred back when he was the public broadcaster’s Chief Operating Officer.

How much does Motsoeneng owe SABC?

According to Makathini, the former SABC boss has yet to make arrangements to repay the R21-million it is believed he siphoned from the broadcaster over the years.

He indicated to SABC News that the issue has been taken up with the Special Investigative Unit for further escalation.

“It is very sad and very painful; it talks to a very bleak and dark past that the SABC journalists and editorial staff were subjected to. But what is giving hope is that a lot has been done to turn around the situation and provide them with that level of protection and assurance that as the board we stand for independence and impartiality.

“We’re in court with Hlaudi Motsoeneng trying to recover R21 million. We’ve been assisted also by the SIU. There is about R21 million that we trying to recover from Mr Hlaudi Motsoeneng,” Makathini said.

Motsoeneng hits back at public broadcaster

However, Motsoeneng, believing that the report’s findings are nothing but rubbish, indicated that he was not aware of any monies he was due to pay back to the SABC.

He further went on the defence about allegations of mistreating employees that were levelled against him in the commission’s report, stating that if anything, all he has ever been was ” the first person at the SABC to make sure that all employees are treated fairly.”

“You can check with the workers at the SABC, they are all happy. You see, this is a journey of people tarnishing our name. When I came to the SABC, I changed the whole set-up. SABC was finally healthy. The past five years that I have been there, SABC was okay financially, I left cash in the bank,” he said.

Unfortunately, the hard-sell has not convinced Makathini otherwise. The broadcaster’s board chairperson has vowed to work tirelessly through the legal route, to hold all those mentioned in the report accountable, one way or another.

“The SABC commits to taking urgent disciplinary action against those implicated in terms of the SABC’s disciplinary code and policies. The notion that holding those implicated in wrongdoing accountable would be seen as a witch hunt is rejected.

“In fact it is part of the terms of reference of the inquiry to recommend appropriate corrective action which may include disciplinary action where there’s misconduct. It is the SABC view, that due process must be followed when there is evidence of transgression of the SABC’s policies,” he warned.