Hlaudi accuses Mxakwe of running the broadcaster to the ground

Former controversial SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng has accused the public broadcaster of playing into the gallery after it heaped praises to its outgoing CEO, Madoda Mxawe.

After the SABC had congratulated Mxakwe’s leadership and applauding him for what the broadcaster had claimed to be a great leadership, Motsoeneng went ballistic and threw down the gauntlet at the broadcaster challenging it to show proof of Mxakwe’s good leadership and the broadcaster’s financials since the outgoing CEO had joined the SABC.

The leader of African Content Movement political party did not mince his words and called the SABC nonsense.

He said that he was really puzzled by the way the broadcaster was worshipping Mxakwe and called the SABC a nonsensical company that was insulting the intelligence of South Africans.

“The SABC is talking nonsense when they praise Madoda and his leadership style. He fired people at the broadcaster and failed to implement turnaround strategy while failing to steer the sinking ship of the SABC to the right direction. In fact, he failed to lead the SABC, and when he leaves they are singing his praises. What nonsense is this,” asked Motsoeneng.

In a statement released by the SABC’s spokesperson Mmoni Seapolelo on Tuesday, she stated that Mxawe was the first CEO to complete his five-year contract in over 15 years after he was appointed the position in July 2018.

“Mr Mxakwe joined the SABC at a time when it was facing governance failures, corruption, gross mismanagement, and a crippling financial situation. Over the past five years, Mr Mxakwe and the management team worked closely with all employees and the board to reverse the dire situation, setting the public broadcaster on a recovery path and rebuilt its credibility,” said Seapolelo.

Seapolelo also said that despite financial sustainability challenges that are still persisting at the public broadcaster, “the SABC stabilised under his leadership”.

However, Motsoeneng did not take kindly the praises heaped to Mxawe and went on a tirade, accusing the broadcaster of lying to the public.

Motsoeneng said that when he became a COO in 2011 until 2016, he managed to turnaround the fortunes of the SABC as he claimed that he took the broadcaster’s revenue from R4 billion to R8 billion.

“It is not true that Madoda fixed the SABC, but he messed it up and run it to the ground. He was given R3 billion bailout, but he failed dismally to turn the SABC around. He fired talented people and senior officials, and he failed to get local content to the broadcaster. The man has collapsed the SABC and for him to be praised like that as if he changed everything is an utter nonsense. During our time we saved people’s jobs and increased the revenue from R4 billion to R8 billion, and we were not begging for bailouts from government.

“I left the SABC with R881 million in cash, and when Madoda and his executive took over the SABC money in the back dropped to R81,7 million and in between 2019 and 2021, the broadcaster was given a bailout of R3,2 billion by the government. The must show SABC financials and all the lies will be exposed. They paid SIU money to investigate people including me. Imagine how much the SABC had paid to the SIU to investigate cases that had failed to materialise,” said Motsoeneng.

SABC financial statements show that when Motsoeneng left, the company had R8 billion revenue, which declined to R4,97 billion in 2020/2021 financial year.

SABC spokesperson Mmoni Seapolelo said: “The SABC will not entertain ill-informed utterances from disgruntled individuals who are still before courts for contributing to the SABC’s unfortunate status and continuously find opportunities to validate themselves. During Mr. Mxakwe’s tenure consequence management was prioritised and implemented and issues relating to past legacy of unlawful activities and financial mismanagement were addressed.”

Mxakwe couldn’t be reached for comment as his phone was switched off.


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