Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo briefs media on state entities that fall under her portfolio. Picture: Getrude Makhafola/ANA

Johannesburg - The SA Qualifications Authority (SAQA) has yet to report back to Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo regarding the verification of South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) permanent board members' qualifications. Dlodlo on Thursday, said the verification process was not yet completed. 

"A lot of things have been said about the delay in the appointment of a permanent SABC board. I did say in the portfolio committee report, that was so badly reported, that I am awaiting a response from SAQA to assist us in the verifying qualifications of the incumbents to the board...I have not received a response as yet," Dlodlo said after addressing the Nation Brand Forum organised by Brand SA in Johannesburg. 

"We spoke to SAQA this morning and they said they would respond to us in writing. I am awaiting that."

Dlodlo reiterated that she never said that the board appointments would be completed within two days as reported on Tuesday. 

The SAQA process was expected to be wrapped up within two days, and not the actual appointment of the permanent board, she said.

"There is no board that will be appointed in two days' time. That process has not been finalised yet. All that information will be packaged for the president's eyes once the process is finalised for him to take a decision on the basis of information placed before him." 

The delay in finalising the appointment of permanent board members drew widespread criticism with President Jacob Zuma accused by the Democratic Alliance (DA) of "dragging his feet" in appointing the board. 

Parliament completed interviews three weeks prior to the interim board's end of term on September 26 and submitted its recommended board members' list to Zuma to make a final decision the appointments. 

On the lack of permanent executives at the SABC, Dlodlo said the fact that there was an acting chief executive officer (CEO), chief financial officer (CFO)  and chief operating officer (COO) did not mean that the public broadcaster was in a crisis. 

"We have a lot of vacant positions in all the entities, it is not just the SABC. Contrary to reports, what I have witnessed is that there has not been no recklessness or corruption. The narrative we seem to push is that those in acting positions are reckless and susceptible to corruption, I want us to dispel that myth straight away." 

The interim board had completed the process of interviews to fill executive positions and names were submitted, said Dlodlo. 

"I was not happy with the names that were given to me by the interim board...for various reasons that I will not share with you here, except to say it was not because I was pre-judging the integrity of those individuals...safe to say the SABC now needs people with proven expertise in turning around institutions, whether it is a COO,CEO or CFO," said Dlodlo. 

"I want people that have proven experience in radio and television broadcasting at executive level. The incumbents did not have that level of experience, they were good candidates, but did not meet my expectations as a person ultimately responsible for the SABC." 

She said that she had full confidence in the SABC's acting executives - CEO Nomsa Philiso, COO Bessie Tugwana and CFO Thabile Dlamini.