Carrim, Ndabeni-Abrahams meet with SABC


South Africa’s newly appointed Minister of Communications, Yunus Carrim, and his Deputy Minister, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, met with the SABC board and management on 30 July to take forward the issues that were discussed at the previous meeting held on 17 July.

“We have decided to set up a high-level team made up of the SABC, the Department of Communications (DoC), National Treasury and the Auditor General of South Africa to set a firm foundation for financial stability of the public broadcaster,’ said Minister Carrim in a statement issued by the DoC.

The team will ensure that all the challenges emanating out of the government guarantee targets are addressed within reasonable means and that the SABC is appropriately skilled at the right levels.

According to the DoC statement, this resolution is informed by the progress made by the Joint Task Team (JTT) set up between the Department and the SABC that was set up two weeks ago.

The meeting also noted significant progress on Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) readiness and recognised the need to further consult other stakeholders to secure consensus. A meeting of all free to air broadcasting is to be convened shortly.

The JTT will continue to function to ensure the launch of Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT).
Significant progress has been made in reviewing the Shareholder Compact to ensure that the incoming board can use it to make the SABC far more effective.

The meeting also noted the preparations for the launch of the SABC 24-Hour news channel scheduled for 1 August 2013. A degree of consensus was reached concerning the launch and how to deal with the outstanding financial, legal and other aspects of the launch.

“South Africans need to have access to a constant stream of news, information and entertainment. The SABC has a responsibility to ensure that,’ said Minister Carrim.

SABC Board Chairperson, Ms Ellen Tshabalala, said that the SABC is using the launch to fine-tune its readiness for the launch of DTT.

“I am satisfied with the progress made in addressing the issues at the SABC. We remain committed to playing our full role in turning the SABC around,’ said Tshabalala.


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