'TAC allegations are defamatory'

Allegations that SABC board deputy chairman Christine Qunta is involved in a company selling medicines purported to cure HIV/Aids were "irresponsible and defamatory", her lawyer said yesterday.

Allegations that SABC board deputy chairman Christine Qunta is involved in a company selling medicines purported to cure HIV/Aids were "irresponsible and defamatory", her lawyer said yesterday.

Athol Gordon, from Bowman Gilfillan Attorneys, was responding to a threat by Zachie Achmat of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) to take court action if Qunta was officially reappointed to the SABC board.

Gordon said Qunta would not conduct a debate in the media regarding allegations which lacked factual basis.

"It is apparent that this is a calculated attack on our client's reputation by the TAC, and appropriate legal action is being considered," he said.

On Wednesday, Achmat said that if President Thabo Mbeki officially reappointed Qunta to the board, the TAC would definitely take the matter to court.

Qunta is one of 12 candidates selected by the national assembly's communication committee to sit on the SABC board. Mbeki is yet to officially appoint the selected candidates.

Achmat said that Qunta was one of the directors of Comforter's Healing Gift, a company involved in the registration and patenting of traditional herbs currently being tested for its HIV curative properties.

"There is prima facie evidence that . Qunta, a practising attorney, is an investor and director in a company that profiteers from selling untested and unregistered cures and treatments for Aids," Achmat said. - Sapa

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