SABC loses R910 million: Report

2009-12-18 10:13

The SABC’s audited financial statements reflect a loss of R910

million for the 2008/2009 financial year.

The loss could not only be blamed on the economic situation,

chairperson of the interim board Irene Charnley said in a statement yesterday.

“The economic downturn inevitably impacted on the SABC’s revenue,

however it would be disingenuous to blame this alone for the results. The very

public and sustained battles at a leadership level, for example, undoubtedly

also contributed towards inadequate management of revenue and

expenditure.”

The SABC’s annual report and audited financial statements ending 31

March this year were submitted to Parliament on Thursday.

Revenue increased 0.9%(from R4.705m in 2008 to R4.746m this year) while

expenditure increased 19%.

According to the chief financial officer’s statement in the report,

other problems that negatively impacted on revenue included “schedule

instability” and an increase in discounts offered to clients and agencies.

Charnley also noted the statements reflected a payment by the

previous board of R6.7 million to former chief executive officer Dali

Mpofu.

External auditors gave the SABC a qualified report, saying: “The

director’s report gives details of the auditor general’s special investigation

on procurement, fruitless and wasteful expenditure and non-compliance with

company policies and indicates that the interim board is in the process of

taking the appropriate action in relation to the allegations... In the

meanwhile, we are unable to determine whether the various allegations and other

matters that are still being investigated have an impact on the financial

position.... as disclosed in the financial statements. We are also unable to

determine whether the disclosure of fruitless and wasteful and irregular

expenditure is complete...”

Charnley emphasised that the SABC’s positive achievements should

not be overlooked.

“Notwithstanding the corporate governance and financial challenges

the corporation has faced, on-air and off-air staff continued day after day,

hour after hour to ensure programmes went out on radio and television, keeping

millions of South Africans informed.”

Charnley said the process of fixing the SABC’s problems would take

time, leadership and commitment.

“There are no quick fixes to a crisis of this magnitude.”
 

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