No big golden handshake for SABC’s Hlaudi

Hlaudi Motsoeneng

Axed SABC executive Hlaudi Motsoeneng will not receive a golden handshake but will instead serve a month’s notice before permanently exiting the public broadcaster.

The one-month’s notice is to allow enough time to wrap up disciplinary proceedings against him.

This was disclosed at a meeting between the SABC and the National Assembly’s portfolio committee on communications by SABC interim board chairman Khanyisile Kweyama.

She said Motsoeneng had not been dismissed with immediate effect because the SABC wanted to finalise the disciplinary process around the public protector’s report findings.

His dismissal following another disciplinary process‚ for holding a media conference at which he attacked the interim board and MPs in parliament‚ was announced on Monday.

However‚ the public protector’s 2014 report recommends that a disciplinary process be held and public protector recommendations are binding.

But Kweyama said it was unlikely that process would be concluded.

Asked about whether he would be paid out for the remaining one year on his contract‚ she said they were under no obligation to pay out a contract when the person was found guilty of misconduct.

The R11-million bonus paid to Motsoeneng had already been referred to the special investigating unit.

Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo told the committee she felt Motsoeneng’s dismissal had been fair.

She, however, questioned the SABC’s payment of bonuses like the ones paid to Motsoeneng because there was no performance management system in place.

The SABC recorded operating losses of R509-million for the fourth quarter of the 2016-2017 financial year.

“The SABC is expecting to conclude 2016-17 with a net loss of R1.1-billion‚ resulting in a 52% decline compared to prior year results‚” acting group chief executive Tseliso Ralitabo said.

The committee also heard the minister and the interim board were working on turning the broadcaster around.

They had rescinded the policy about the broadcast of violent protest imagery‚ had canned the New Age breakfast broadcasts which had cost the SABC R20-million and had reverted back to the old editorial code.

“We want our journalists to know they can go out and do their work as journalists‚” Kweyama said. – TimesLIVE

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