Former MK vets 'under attack'

2010-10-15 18:32

Johannesburg - Former Umkhonto we Sizwe members in "strategic positions" were under attack by "counter revolutionaries", the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans' Association said on Friday.

"If you have been watching the trend, all former members of Umkhonto we Sizwe who are deployed in strategic positions - they have been under attack," said MKMVA president Kebby Maphatsoe at a media briefing at Luthuli House in Johannesburg.

"From the president (Jacob Zuma), you had (Communication Minister Siphiwe Nyanda) General Nyanda who was under attack. You now have (suspended SABC group chief executive) Solly Mokoetle, you now have (national police commissioner) Bheki Cele, who is under attack."

Maphatsoe said the "counter revolutionary" forces were trying to prevent former MK members from leading "sensitive state institutions".

"...they know them being employed there or deployed there, they will perform very well... because they will understand the policies of the ANC and they will implement it to the letter.

"If you are strong and firm and effective and fighting against corruption you will always get people who speak badly about you."

During the briefing he reiterated the MKMVA's call for the dissolution of the SABC board, charging that a silent "coup d'├ętat" was taking place at the national broadcaster.

'Silently undermined'

"... the legitimate heads of the corporation who were appointed by Parliament and the shareholder (government) to lead the organisation have been silently undermined and effectively removed from authority," he said.

Mokoetle was suspended earlier this year. In September, he was formally charged for poor performance by the broadcaster after mediation talks failed. The MKMVA on Friday said Mokoetle was "set up" to fail in his role by the board.

Board members challenged Mokoetle on his appointment of Phil Molefe as head of news and his apparent failure to come up with a turnaround strategy for the cash-strapped national broadcaster.

The MKMVA appealed to Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Communications, who will hear a presentation of the SABC's annual report next week, to dissolve the broadcaster's board.

Should the committee fail to do so, the MKMVA may decide to approach Nyanda to intervene to dissolve the board.

The association accused a number of SABC board members of having "conflicts of interest": "Felleng Sekha (deputy SABC board chairperson)... had previously submitted her CV to the interim board... for the position of group chief executive officer."

Maphatsoe charged that Sekha was instrumental in Mokoetle's suspension.

He said another board member, Pippa Green, had applied to the interim board for the head of news position, competing against Molefe.

"...Pippa Green did not recuse herself and instead went ahead to be part of adjudicating over some of the people she had competed against before she was appointed as board member. This is an irregularity."