SA Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana says he will not hesitate to place
the media advertising printing packaging and publishing seta (Mappp
Seta) under administration ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œas a last resortÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â, after claims by
constituents of financial irregularities and resistance to
transformation, writes Thom McLachlan in Business Day.
A demonstration organised by members of the Film & Electronic Media Chamber took place outside the setaÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s offices in Rivonia on Friday. It included the South African Screen Federation (Sasfed) and the South African ScriptwritersÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ Union (Saswu), and was backed by the South African National EditorsÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ Forum, the PublishersÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ Association of SA, and representation from the setaÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s advertising chamber.
The constituents called on the minister to place the seta under administration within 72 hours and appoint an administrator by the end of this week.
Mdladlana said he was considering the demands and consulting government parties. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThe Skills Development Act is quite clear on this matter and if I have to act in terms of this legislation I will not hesitate to do so as a last resort.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œI have referred the memorandum from the two organisations (Sasfed and Saswu) for further legal opinion and have also instructed my officials to look at the repercussions of immediate appointment of an adminis- trator,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â he said.
Mdladlana said he had referred the matter to the Nat-ional Skills Authority for advice.
The constituents were also calling for the chairman, Martin Deysel, to step down. Sasfed general secretary Nicola Rauch said: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œDeysel acted unilaterally in a number of ways, including the suspension of the CEO, Melanie Swanepoel.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
Swanepoel was suspended this month and the Seta withdrew her 24-hour personal security contract. She had employed the services of a security company after reportedly receiving death threats when she blew the whistle on affairs at the Seta.
Mdladlana said that the Scorpions were in possession of a forensic report involving financial irregularities in the Seta.
Click here to read the full report, posted on Business Day's website.