2000

2000

22 January 2000: In a City Press article, “Matlare didn't fit tough suits at SABC” by Makhudu Sefara, the following sentence: “Controversial board member Thami Mazwai, famous for his claims that news objectivity is a farce, complained that too many whites occupied critical positions at the SABC.” testifies to the strong anti-white racism permeating the SABC

28 March 2000: After five years as SABC chief executive of news, Enoch Sithole resigns.

He was described as the "axeman" of the SABC, having being instrumental in getting rid of Max du Preez (journalist), Sarah Crowe (former head of TV current affairs), Jill Chisholm, Joe Thloloe (former editor-in-chief of TV news), Ivan Fynn (former head of TV news), Allister Sparks (another former editor-in-chief of TV news), Barney Mthomboti (former editor in chief of radio news), Govan Reddy, Ami Nanackchand and Ida Jooste. All victims at the SABC in Sithole's march to the top.

Sithole claimed on his CV (and the SABC's web site) that he had a BA degree from the Eduardo Mondlane University in Maputo, Mozambique. The claim was repeated in the millennium edition of Who's Who in South Africa. But his lawyer admitted that he does not. The university itself said "We cannot find his name anywhere. It would appear that he never attended our university."

What's more, his claim to South African citizenship was then investigated by the Department of Home Affairs. The former director-general of Home Affairs, Albert Mokoena, quit in September 1999 after he was found guilty of misconduct and corruption when it was discovered that documents went missing. Sithole's file did not contain any birth certificate or any registration of birth. There were no supporting documents from his parents to vouch for his birth in South Africa. Yet, between 1988 and 1999 Sithole was issued five SA passports.

Sam Sithole, a teacher at the Sithokotile High School in Matsulu, near Nelspruit which Enoch Sithole attended, said: "It was common knowledge that Enoch was a Mozambican".

Juliet Miyabo, a former fiancée who brought Sithole into the SABC and then became involved in a paternity suit with him over a six-month-old baby, denied she had reported him to Home Affairs because he had jilted her.

The SABC suspended Sithole and ordered him to return his access card, a cellphone and other company equipment."

7 April 2000: Embattled former SABC news chief Enoch Sithole, who apparently lied about his academic qualifications, is only one of a handful of senior executives who have not supplied the corporation with their certificates.

7 April 2000: According to Ivor Powell and Jubie Matlou, writing in the 7 April 2000 issue of the Mail & Guardian:

‘Gemini slams the corporation’s group executive for a shortage of skills and lack of leadership and declares outright that the current executive lacks the capacity to implement restructuring strategies. The report is equally damning of the SABC’s recruiting practices which it criticises for operating on principles of patronage and nepotism rather than excellence.’

12 May 2000: The SABC's chief executive, the Reverend Hawu Mbatha, was axed this week as a major restructuring of the troubled corporation's top management kicked into action.

“Senior sources in the public broadcaster said that a letter amounting to a dismissal was sent this week to Mbatha under the signature of SABC board chair Dr Vincent Maphai.” Ivor Powell in the Mail & Guardian

22 May 2000: The SABC announces that Mbatha had been relieved of his duties, “with immediate effect” - 18 months before his contract was due to expire. The SABC said Cecilia Khuzwayo, the senior general manager of human resources, had been appointed as acting group chief executive

22 May 2000: The SABC confirms the resignations of executives Molefe Mokgatle and Thaninga Shope, who were found guilty by an internal disciplinary hearing for failing to comply with the corporation's financial control procedures.

Mokgatle and Shope are accused of depleting by some R348-million the SABC's commissioning budget by over-invoicing programme distributors and flouting the broadcaster's commissioning procedures.

The auditing firm KPMG recommended to the SABC that the two be disciplined but no action is ever taken and no attempt is ever made to recover the money. Shope was, thereafter, deployed by the ANC to NEPAD and then the Department of Foreign Affairs becoming successively, South Africa’s ambassador to Gabon and, recently, Venezuela. Mokgatle went into the private sector.

14 June 2000: The SABC, with Zikalala as head of news and in contravention of its own ethical code, broadcasts appallingly insensitive and shocking visuals of the murdered bodies of the brutally murdered Cape Town business woman, Brenda Fairhead and her young daughter Kia, lying on a mortuary slab and showing the full and horrifying extent of their injuries. In response to public outrage, former MK cadre Snuki Zikalala says that: “Television is a visual medium.” The Fairhead family issue a statement saying that this was: "sick, very cruel and unfair" and a “gross invasion of privacy”.

13 August 2000: City Press reveals that Hlaudi Motsoeneng has been appointed to a position that does not exist in Bloemfontein news office even though he does not have a matric pass. It says that an investigation by the Bloemfontein HR department was halted by a senior Auckland Park executive – SABC staff believe that that person was Zikalala.

We were told he (Motsoeneng) does not have a Std 10 certificate, which is a minimum requirement for entry at the SABC News Division.

We can further reveal that Motsoeneng was actually appointed to a post that never existed before at the SABC Bloemfontein office, that of Specialist Producer.

This is the appointment Zikalala announced at a formal meeting in Bloemfontein on Friday, June 2.

The appointment took place despite opposition from the human resources department.”

City Press further revealed that an investigation into Motsoeneng’s qualifications by the SABC’s HR department and another enquiry into his unauthorised use of an SABC vehicle for no less than three months were mysteriously stopped with reasons being given.

City Press reported that these probes were ‘dropped under questionable circumstances.’

September 2000: In the monthly SABC house magazine, Intekom, the producer of 50/50, Danie van der Walt, writes: Is this the same Zikalala who in the name of transformation walked into a Morning Live studio saying that he is still seeing too many white faces.”

Zikalala never denies the accusation. Many white SABC staffers will testify to being the victims of his routine and naked racism and his attempts to intimidate white staff by opening meetings by saying, “I am proud to have been a MK cadre” and “From my Marxist viewpoint.” Such behaviour was without precedent in the SABC prior to his arrival.

3 October 2000: The head of the SABC board, Dr Vincent Maphai, addresses the national assembly’s portfolio committee on communications. During his address he says the SABC’s public image was “in tatters” and that it had become a “public circus”. (Cape Times 3/10/00).