MDDA chairperson on leave until her term ends

2017-11-28 19:17
Phelisa Nkomo. (MDDA website)

Phelisa Nkomo. (MDDA website)

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Cape Town – Embattled Media Diversity and Development Agency chairperson Phelisa Nkomo has taken leave until the end of her term in February.

On Tuesday morning portfolio committee on communications chairperson, Humphrey Maxegwana referred to a letter from Communications Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, in which she said that Nkomo has taken leave for three months.

Her term ends in February.

A litany of accusations against Nkomo emerged over the past few months and, in October, the committee decided to investigate the agency.

At the meeting in October then Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo confirmed that Nkomo acted as the agency's CEO and "was read the riot act".

Nkomo previously denied to the committee that she had acted as CEO.

In September, Deputy Minister of Communications Tandi Mahambehlala told the committee the MDDA board had tried to remove then acting CEO Donald Liphoko because he put a stop to dubious contracts.

Liphoko blew the lid of mismanagement at the agency during a committee meeting in August.

At Tuesday's meeting, DA MP Veronica van Dyk made it clear that Nkomo should not be left off the hook.

She said many things happened while Nkomo was board chairperson and added that there was a "lot of evidence that she did not act in goodwill".

"I think we still need an inquiry on what happened at the MDDA," she said.

"People need to know they are held responsible for their actions, otherwise they just leave."

Responsibility to taxpayers

Maxegwana said Nkomo taking leave did not stop the committee from instituting an inquiry.

"She is not an employee, she is a member of the board, recommended by us as committee," he said.

He said the committee would discuss the MDDA at its first meeting next year.

Van Dyk added: "It is very important that we as committee show we take responsibility."

She said there is a culture of corruption in the country and people are used to there not being any consequences.

"We have a responsibility to the taxpayers. We need to make an example that people are held accountable from the committee's side," she said.

Kubayi-Ngubane's letter further stated that she has requested President Jacob Zuma to designate a new chairperson from the current board members.

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