Rubben Mohlaloga was sentenced to 20 years in jail for defrauding the Land Bank of R6 million. Picture: Simone Kley/African News Agency (ANA)
Cape Town - The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) will get a new permanent head soon, after Parliament ordered the fast-tracking of the process to appoint a new chairperson.

This follows the removal of former Icasa chairperson Rubben Mohlaloga a few months ago after he was convicted and sentenced to 20 years for fraud and corruption.

Icasa then appointed an acting chairperson after a wrangle between Mohlaloga, the minister of communications and Parliament on his successor.

Mohlaloga had argued that he was still appealing the sentence, but Parliament insisted that he should be removed as the sentence had already been imposed by the court.

Speaker Thandi Modise told the programming committee the portfolio committee on communications would soon advertise the position.

The opposition wanted to know how soon the position of Icasa chairperson would be filled.

The communications committee will have to shortlist and interview candidates once the nominations have come in.

The Western Cape High Court made a finding against Mohlaloga in March that he was not entitled to occupy the position of Icasa chair after his conviction.

Mohlaloga, former Land Bank boss Phil Mohlahlane and an attorney were found guilty in Gauteng in February last year of defrauding the Land Bank of R6 million.

The High Court said Parliament was correct in removing Mohlaloga as it had powers to do so.

It said the role of Parliament was legislative and it must be allowed to perform that function.

Parliament had then axed Mohlaloga. He went to the high court to block the process but the court threw out his application.

Icasa then replaced him with Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng as acting chairperson.

This would be until Parliament has started a process of getting a new Icasa head.

Politics Bureau