SABC, Nedbank sign loan agreement

Friday, January 15, 2010

Pretoria - The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has signed a five-year loan agreement with Nedbank which will contribute to stabilising the cash strapped corporation.

"The SABC has now entered into a five-year loan agreement with Nedbank, thus addressing liquidity concerns and significantly improving the stabilisation environment," said SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago.

He said the funds would enable the new leadership of the SABC to begin the process of turning around the corporation.

The SABC's interim board, which was established last year after the former board was dissolved, handed over power to the new 12-member board headed by former Minster for Arts, Culture, Science and Technology Ben Ngubane on Wednesday.

The interim board, whose term ended on Saturday, was appointed in the midst of a financial and leadership crisis at the pubic broadcaster.

"This is the first time that there has ever been a formal handover between boards of the SABC and is an indication of the commitment of members of both boards to building a viable and dynamic public broadcaster that is focused on meeting audience needs and expectations," said Kganyago.

The interim board had been focused on stabilising the SABC and helping secure an additional R200 million budget from government as well as a government guarantee of R1.4 billion.

During its tenure the interim board began proceedings against four executives who were suspended as a result of the findings of the Auditor General.

"Two executives have undergone the disciplinary process, and appropriate sanction given for any transgressions in line with recommendations made by independent disciplinary panel chairpersons," said the SABC.

The other two cases are ongoing and are expected to be finalised in January 2010. Disciplinary processes relating to 10 junior staff are also in progress.