The SABC is ‘on its knees’ according to a report by the City Press, with the public broadcaster unable to pay its bills, and no reprieve from government in sight.
The paper reported that the SABC currently owes R100 million to its suppliers, including R90 million which needs to go to independent producers.
The bill is lower than the R120 million that was predicted, but 64 companies are on the list of people who are owed money, the paper said.
Speaking to sources within the SABC, the City Press said the financial crisis is mostly due to former chief operating officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng, whose interference in programming caused an estimated R300 million in damage to various departments.
Motsoeneng’s forced policies – like the 90% local only content – led to conflict with advertisers, the effects of which are now being seen, the paper reported.
The broadcaster has also reportedly been told by National Treasury to seek alternative revenue streams, with no indication that the government will be coming to bail the group out with guarantees.
Adding to the SABC’s woes is the fact that no one is paying TV licences, with the group owed billions in unpaid fees.
It has been speculated that it would have to cut staff to help rein in costs.