SABC fires Chris Maroleng as COO

SABC has axed its chief operations officer Chris Maroleng following a disciplinary hearing.
SABC has axed its chief operations officer Chris Maroleng following a disciplinary hearing.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi

The state-owned South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has fired its chief operations officer Chris "Don't Touch Me on My Studio" Maroleng.

In a curt media statement released on Tuesday evening, the public broadcaster said it axed Maroleng, who had stepped into the position following the dismissal of the controversial Hlaudi Motsoeneng, following a board meeting on the day.

"The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) board met on Tuesday, 23 April 2019," read the statement.

"After due consideration of the findings and recommendations of a disciplinary process, the board resolved to terminate the contract of employment of its chief operations officer, Mr Chris Maroleng, with immediate effect." 

Sowetan’s sister publication Sunday World recently reported that Maroleng was found guilty of charges that included gross negligence.

The paper said a disciplinary hearing found him guilty of defying chief executive Madoda Mxakwe’s instruction by giving a glowing testimonial for former group executive for sport Marcia Mahlalela, who quit before she was about to face a disciplinary inquiry.

Maroleng was also accused of ignoring HR advice by giving Carmen Schneider a R15,000 allowance to lead a change management programme, despite having agreed with the SABC group executive for HR Jonathan Thekiso that there won’t be any material changes to Schneider’s terms of employment contract and salary.

Maroleng became popular in 2010 for his "Don't touch me on my studio" warning he made during an eNCA television interview with André Visagie, the former secretary of the AWB (Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging), during a heated exchange.

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