News

Ndabeni mislead parliament?

Date: Jul 10, 2019

Did Ndabeni-Abrahams mislead parliament on SABC funding?

The Democratic Alliance’s shadow Minister of Communications, Phumzile van Damme, accused the Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies (DOCTG) , Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, of “misleading Parliament” when she allegedly withheld a crucial letter purported to have been sent to her by Finance Minister, Tito Mboweni, on June 25, several days before Ndabeni-Abrahams appeared before the parliamentary Committee that exercises oversight on her department. Ndabeni-Abrahams met the committee on 3 July and made no mention of the letter.

“Misleading Parliament” has in the recent past been used effectively by opposition parties to put pressure on the governing party to remove culprits in the National executive who are found guilty of misleading Parliament.

Is Ndabeni-Abrahams guilty of this new “abomination”? HotNews spoke to various sources within the SABC, Treasury and the DOCDT, some of whom requested not to be named as they are not permitted to make public statements on the matter.

Sources within the SABC have conceded that the current leadership is not familiar with the technical requirements of applying for a government guarantee. A guarantee is an instrument used by State Owned Entities (SOEs) to secure funding from commercial banks outside of the normal budget allocation periods.

“Van Damme, just like the SABC, seems to have confused a government guarantee with a government bailout. The latter is an allocation of funds from the fiscus by Treasury as a cash injection to ease cashflow constraints”, said our source at Treasury.

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