Evidence mounts against SABC chair

An independent verification process commissioned by the DA has revealed that SABC chairperson Ellen Tshabalala does not have the qualifications she claims on her curriculum vitae (CV).

Tshabalala is accused of misrepresenting her academic qualifications when applying to the committee for the SABC job.

She stated on her CV that she had a BComm degree from the University of SA (Unisa). Tshabalala claimed she held a post-graduate degree in labour relations.

Last week Tshabalala obtained an interim interdict in the Western Cape High Court halting an inquiry into whether she lied about her academic qualifications.

The DA said it enlisted the services of Managed Integrity Evaluation (MIE) to check Tshabalala’s qualifications against the National Qualifications Register, a process referred to as “background screening”.

MIE describes what “background screening” means on its website as follows:

“In a nutshell, background screening means that the things people say about themselves, or don’t say about themselves, are tested to determine their accuracy. For example, a person may lay claim to a Bachelors Degree in Commerce awarded by the London School of Economics. MIE checks whether the degree exists, and whether it was issued to the candidate by the school concerned.”

The screening process revealed that, according to the National Qualifications Register:

  • Tshabalala registered for a Bachelor of Commerce at Unisa in 1996;
  • Her student number was 0658-212-5;
  • Tshablala was last registered in 1996;
  • The qualification was not completed.

It could not be verified whether or not Tshabala holds a postgraduate diploma in labour relations from Unisa as this qualification is not included on the National Qualifications Register, the DA said.

The results of the screening process appear to corroborate the letter issued by Unisa in July this year that stated: “According to our records no qualifications were awarded to the mentioned individual.”

The DA said it will present the results of the screening process as new evidence at the parliamentary Inquiry into Tshabalala’s qualifications when it resumes.

“It is unfortunate that, instead of co-operating with the Inquiry, Ms. Tshabalala has deployed high-powered lawyers to frustrate and delay the process,” the political party said.

“The evidence is mounting that Ms. Tshabalala lied to Parliament about her qualifications when she applied for a position on the SABC Board. The DA will continue to pursue this matter through the parliamentary process until a satisfactory conclusion has been reached.”

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Evidence mounts against SABC chair