Saturday, November 25, 2017

Political parties demand parliamentary inquiry into MultiChoice's allegedly 'corrupt' and 'unethical' dealings with Gupta-linked ANN7 and Faith Muthambi.

Political parties are demanding a parliamentary inquiry into MultiChoice's allegedly "corrupt" and "unethical" dealings with the controversial Gupta family and its highly-criticised ANN7 channel, as well as the controversial former minister of communications, Faith Muthambi.

Both the Economic Freedom Front (EFF) and Democratic Alliance (DA) reacted swiftly to fresh revelations that MultiChoice is paying ANN7 a staggering R141 380 000 per year for the low-rated and little watched channel.

ANN7 has been much criticised for its ongoing mistakes, biased coverage and for allegedly inciting racial discord in South Africa using DStv's platform to do so.

MultiChoice also made a dubious R25 million once-off payment to the Guptas for ANN7.

Both the Economic Freedom Front (EFF) and Democratic Alliance (DA) political parties on Friday called for a parliamentary inquiry into MultiChoice's allegedly "corrupt" dealings with the Guptas and politicians over the ANN7 channel.

The DA's member of parliament Phumzile Van Damme told TVwithThinus that "we believe that this issue be investigated by parliament, as part of the broader State Capture inquiries undertaken by the different committees in Parliament."

"We are in particular seriously concerned about MultiChoice, and what appears to be unethical conduct in this regard relating to the Gupta family. We intend on getting to the bottom of this."

The EFF's member of parliament Mbuyiseni Ndlozi in a statement says "The EFF condemns the corrupt relations of MultiChoice and Faith Muthambi which suppressed competition within the pay-TV industry with disgust".

"The recent revelations in the #GuptaLeaks show how Faith Muthambi as minister of communications worked with the Guptas to solicit bribes in exchange for protection of MultiChoice from the competition".

"Koos Bekker's company, MultiChoice, paid millions to the Guptas, through ANN7, in exchange for Faith Muthambi to adopt the policy of unencryption in the set-top boxes for digital terrestrial television (DTT) migration."

"The Guptas, through their influence on Jacob Zuma and Faith Muthambi, managed to guarantee their stay on the DStv platform whilst being remunerated unreasonable amounts of money despite their low audience numbers," says Mbuyiseni Ndlozi.

"It is clear that MultiChoice was paying them for securing a DTT policy in relation to set-top boxes that would maintain them as the sole players in the pay-TV space."

'The EFF calls on parliament to hold an inquiry into the Gupta influence over Faith Muthambi. In this inquiry, companies like MultiChoice must be held accountable publicly for their criminal activities in the sector, suppressing competition in favour of their domination."

"The EFF will also be reporting MultiChoice to the Competition Commission to investigate how they influenced the policy on set-top boxes in favour of their market domination."