Guest Column

SABC appoints new chief: Same script, different cast?

2015-07-01 18:06

Mthunzi Mbatha @MthunziMbatha

The SABC has appointed Frans Matlala as the new boss blah blah blah ... pass me the remote and bring a beer while you’re at it.

This is the general reaction South Africans have to any changes – good or bad – in our not so great parastatals. It’s the same script, different cast and perhaps a new soundtrack all the time.

A new chief walks in every now and then with a “turn around” strategy and before we know it he’s turning around and walking out the door.

The public service chews and spits out professionals faster than any industry. Ask a few who’ve burnt their fingers.

One of the latest boardroom dramas played out at Eskom when the power utility’s entire executive was suspended. After some of the episodes were aired in court, then chief executive Tshediso Matona “reached an amicable settlement” with the company and they parted ways, ushering in the Brian Molefe era.

The national carrier, South African Airways, is always on a wing and a prayer. If it’s not asking for a bailout from the treasury, there’s some “turn around strategy” in the pipeline and executives playing musical chairs. Such is life if business is mixed with politics ...

Parastatals are highly contested terrains that redefine how ordinary folks understand business. The boardroom tales have so many twists and turns that one wonders where reality ends and fiction begins.

In the absence of good programming on the small screen, South Africans might as well enjoy the boardroom drama. 

Read more on:    sabc

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