Ex-SABC CEO Matthews disingenuous and a coward - ANC spokesperson

Johannesburg - ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa called SABC acting CEO Jimi Matthews’s sudden resignation disingenuous and cowardice.

Kodwa said Matthews’s resignation was a ploy to create instability at the public broadcaster ahead of this year’s local election on Tuesday.

"He [Matthews] is reckless. We condemn his conduct. His resignation is meant to create a crisis. It’s convenient that it’s timed before elections. It’s meant to create a perception of an unstable broadcaster. Perhaps his resignation was handled outside of the SABC," Kodwa told News24.

Kodwa said Matthews was just as guilty of a corrosive atmosphere at the SABC. He said, "If there have been problems of editorial content, he is also guilty. Matthews is disingenuous and cowardice." 

Matthews resigned from the SABC, saying recent changes at the broadcaster are “wrong” and he has compromised his values under the current leadership.

Matthews posted a picture of his resignation letter on Twitter on Monday morning, indicating his decision to leave following widespread changes under COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng.

- Read more: Jimi Matthews did the right thing - former SABC board member

Kodwa said Matthews should have consulted Communications Minister Faith Muthambi if he had problems with editorial.

He accused Matthews of being part of a 'clique' which is trying to reverse transformation at the SABC.

"Certain individuals have tried to reverse transformation and Matthews is part of clique that continues to undermine transformation. A lot of senior journalists are aggrieved on how he personally dealt with them.  

“We condemn his conduct. He could have gone to the relevant stakeholders including the minister to complain but he didn't do that. He instead chose to go to the media which proves his agenda," he said. 

Kodwa said the SABC needed to deal with the issue of management.

"We would make a call that the stakeholder and the minister must get closer to the SABC. There are too many acting people. There is an issue about high turnover of CEO's which creates instability," he said. 

News24's attempts to contact Matthews on Tuesday were unsuccessful.

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