Parliament to hold an inquiry into SABC Chairperson's qualifications
09 September 2014
The DA welcomes the decision of the Portfolio Committee on Communications to conduct a formal inquiry into allegations that SABC Chairperson, Ellen Tshabalala, lied about her qualifications.
The decision follows the DA's request on the 14 July 2014 for the Committee to conduct such an inquiry, following a report in the City Press newspaper that Ms. Tshabalala did not have the qualifications listed in her application.
There is strong prima facie evidence that Ms. Tshabalala lied to Parliament about her qualifications during the application process:
In the curriculum vitae submitted to Parliament, Ms Tshabalala claimed to have a B.Com and diploma in labour relations from UNISA; and
A letter from UNISA's legal department, in the DA's possession, indicates that Ms. Tshabalala has neither a degree nor diploma from UNISA.
In addition, it emerged in the Portfolio Committee today that Ms. Tshabalala failed to meet the 26 August 2014 deadline to submit copies of her qualifications to Parliament's legal unit. This was after Ms. Tshabalala had requested an extension on the original deadline of 11 August 2014.
The Committee agreed today that, at its next meeting (Tuesday 16 September 2014), it would decide on:
1. The precise processes and procedures to be followed in conducting the inquiry; and
2. Whether or not it would recommend the suspension of Ms Tshabalala pending the outcome of the inquiry.
If the inquiry finds that Ms. Tshabalala lied to Parliament about her qualifications, she may be removed from office in accordance with section 15 of the Broadcasting Act. Ms.Tshabalala may also face criminal charges since perjury is a criminal offence.
The DA will continue to ensure that justice prevails in this matter. The Chairperson of the SABC Board, as the custodian of public broadcasting in South Africa, needs to be held to the highest standards of ethics and accountability.
Statement issued by Gavin Davis MP, DA Shadow Minister of Communications, September 9 2014
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