Friday, June 12, 2009

South African Broadcasting Corporation hopeless!

It seems like institution after institution related to the state in South Africa finds itself in deep trouble. This time the SABC is in such deep trouble that they have asked the government to bail them out to the amount of R2bn! With this request for a R2bn bailout from government, they will ensure that the citizens of this country have paid twice for their TV licences. Mismanagement is the rule at the SABC, as at many other state entities.

The SABC is the owner of 3 TV channels and several radio stations. The slogan of the SABC is "Broadcasting for Total Citizen Empowerment." My problem with them is that the they are a completely mismanaged institution, sucking citizens dry of their hard earned money. Ok, it really isn't expensive to have a license to have TV in your home, but then you would expect better use of your money! That is not what you get from the SABC!


My solution for this dinosaur of a corporation is to scrap it completely! Get rid of state owned television completely! The SABC was a propaganda machine of the National Party government before the 1994 elections when Nelson Mandela became president, and now it is the propaganda machine of the ANC government! Nothing has changed. It still remains the voicebox of the ruling party!

Instead of having one corporation handling 3 different channels, each of these channels must become independent, non-state television channels. Each channel must have complete autonomy over its own programming, and must be privately owned. Further, each of these television broadcasting companies must become profitable by themselves. There must be no reliance on government funds. This will ensure that the state will no longer be able to prescribe to these television broadcasting companies what programming to show apart from preventing indecency, etc.

Lastly, TV licences must be done away with! Radio licences came to an end many years ago. The time has come for these archaic TV licences to go. Advertizing is sufficient to pay for these television broadcasting companies to run successfully.

Maybe, just maybe, if these television broadcasting companies start standing on their own feet, working hard at their own profitability, then perhaps we will get better programming and better managing of funds. But, only maybe!

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