Former SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng testifies at the Zondo Commission. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - Former SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng has denied making irregular appointments while he held a powerful position at the public broadcaster. 

Motsoeneng concluded his evidence at the Zondo commission on Thursday. 

The ACM leader had been accused of unlawfully giving the go-ahead for human resources at the SABC to make various promotions and appointments.  

The SABC editorial report which was released in August recommended found that various appointments and promotions should be reviewed by the SABC.  

“Human Resources must do an audit of the appointments, promotions or sideways shifts of senior news management, particularly Nothando Maseko, Sebolelo Ditlhakanyane and Charles Matlou. Where the records are found to be incomplete and the gap is not explained, the appointment/promotion must be reversed and the position re-advertised, with the person currently occupying it being invited to reapply,” Thloloe said. 

These individuals were seen to be close allies of Motsoeneng and had carried out his instructions on various occasions. 

Motsoeneng told the commission that he felt attacked when he was accused of making appointments as he did not have the power to do so. 

“It is a malicious gathering of information because it is incorrect that I appointed people irregularly. Chairperson, the custodian of appointments is Human Resources. So how can Hlaudi wake up in the morning and appoint someone? Even if I tried HR would say no. If I appointed someone that would be a process of HR. I did not appoint those people,” said Motsoeneng. 

The commission also heard his involvement in the MultiChoice/SABC deal.  

Motsoeneng was paid over R10 million for securing the controversial deal. 

The deal between the pay-TV operator Multi-Choice and the SABC was seen as largely controversial and was challenged in court proceedings. The deal was worth about R500 million and gave Multi-Choice the rights to the SABC’s archives for a channel on its service, SABC Encore, and it also allowed it to air the SABC’s 24-hour news channel. 

Former SABC CEO Lulama Mokhobo told the commission that she did not agree with the terms of the deal and locked heads with former SABC board chairperson Ellen Tshabalala and Motsoeneng. 

Motsoeneng said the deal was perfect and he boasted about his involvement. He said he was the one who was in charge of negotiating the deal with MultiChoice. 

He said the two channels were his pride and legacy. 

"When you talk about my legacy, it is those two channels and the employment of people," he said.

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