The SABC's chief operating officer (COO) Hlaudi Motsoeneng says it is only big, white-controlled production companies that are complaining about programme commissioning changes at the SABC, that they use black faces to get work, and that the SABC isn't going to allow it.
The controversial and famously matricless Hlaudi Motsoeneng is currently mired in a protracted court case following the Public Protector's report from February 2014 ordering him to be suspended and finding that he "never should have been appointed at the SABC", as well as the Western Cape High Court which ruled twice that the SABC suspend him and start a disciplinary hearing immediately. He is appealing the decision.
A finger-waving Hlaudi Motsoeneng again took to the stage at The New Age newspaper's latest breakfast briefing in Sandton on Monday morning where he boasted about the public broadcaster's increase in spending on programming and slammed South African production companies who are complaining when he was asked about local content.
"At SABC we have put out RFP [request for proposals] book, which is more than R600 million, moving from R121 million in the first time in the history of the organisation. That money is to make sure we produce local content, especially in different provinces," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
"I know there is an issue now about that process where people are unhappy. Some of people, especially from provinces. And reason being because you don't have big production houses in those other different provinces," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
'Controlled by white people'
"What we have been doing at the SABC is, those big production houses they should make sure that they partner with emerging small production houses from different provinces. So that we can give them business," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
"If they're not going to partner with those provinces we are not going to be able to do business with them."
"The fact of the matter: This industry called production houses, they have been controlled by white people most of the time. It's those people who are making noise, because now we are making sure that the cake is shared by everyone," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
"People making noise are those production houses which are big. And when they are saying they are partnering, you only have people – they are not shareholders – they use their faces. Which we are not going to allow at the SABC – those faces, as black people – using them, not even paying them well," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
'When they march to SABC they're 50'
Hlaudi Motsoeneng also took a swipe at non-profit, civil society organisations like the SOS Coalition, which attended the breakfast briefing, and the Right2Know Campaign (R2K) which in the past organised marched and picketed the SABC.
"We are very aware of these matters, who are these people who are making this big noise, saying they represent the public. Actually when they march to SABC they're 50. Only 50 people, they're not even more than 100," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
"Within the organisation we as SABC we want black and white and Indians – the rainbow nation of Nelson Mandela – to produce the content for the SABC, equally so."
"But they should understand that we must prioritise people with disability, we must prioritise those people who are emerging now; now is their time," said Hlaudi Motsoeneng.