Pansalb CEO’s dismissal welcomed

2011-06-29 14:28

The Pan SA Language Board’s (Pansalb) dismissal of its CEO Ntombenhle Nkosi for financial mismanagement, was welcomed today.

It was unfortunate the matter took two years to resolve, said the DA.

“[It] hindered Pansalb in being able to effectively fulfil its constitutional mandate,” said DA MP Annelie Lotriet.

“The DA trusts that in light of Mrs Nkosi’s dismissal, Pansalb will now be able to move forward and carry out its work in promoting and protecting languages in South Africa,” she said.

In parliamentary questions, the DA would ask what led to the delay, despite overwhelming evidence against Nkosi in the form of an independent forensic investigation and “presumably, a court judgment”, Lotriet said.

Civil rights organisation AfriForum said organisations such as Pansalb were increasingly being characterised “by ineffectiveness”.

This was a result of “cadre employment”, funding problems and a lack of management expertise.

“In the process, constitutional and human rights are being violated,” said AfriForum deputy CEO Alana Bailey.

“Effective, transparent management and merit-based appointments will hopefully result in Pansalb eventually complying with the purpose for which it had initially been created, namely to protect and develop indigenous South African languages...”

In a statement yesterday, Pansalb board chairman Dr Elias Malete said the board was aware that dismissal was a harsh penalty with serious consequences.

“Nevertheless, an organisation is entitled and sometimes obliged to respond effectively and decisively to misconduct of the nature proved in this case,” he said.

“The mitigating factors did not persuade the board that a penalty less than dismissal would be appropriate.”

Nkosi was suspended in February 2009 after allegations of misconduct and abuse of power emerged in a six-page dossier sent to Parliament by an anonymous whistleblower.

It accused her of ignoring decisions by her management committee, approving tenders without proper advertising, flouting transparency and equity regulations, and making payments to a close corporation without valid documentation.

Nkosi was found guilty by a disciplinary committee on June 8, and was dismissed on June 24.

Pansalb is the constitutionally-created body for the promotion of all South African languages. 

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