SABC's Krish Naidoo hints at suing Hlaudi Motsoeneng for defamation

Hlaudi Motsoeneng called Krish Naidoo a sell-out during a media briefing./Ruvan Boshoff
Hlaudi Motsoeneng called Krish Naidoo a sell-out during a media briefing./Ruvan Boshoff

SABC board member Krish Naidoo is considering suing embattled former SABC boss Hlaudi Motsoeneng for defamation.

Speaking during cross-examination at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) hearing on Motsoeneng's firing yesterday, Naidoo said he was still applying his mind on whether to institute legal steps against Motsoeneng following his remarks where he labelled him a "sell-out".

"Mr Motsoeneng called me a sell-out when he did a public address in April last year, and in political terms a sell-out has a very particular connotation.

"It means that someone sold out, can't be trusted and you're a traitor, so I have been contemplating over the last few months whether I shouldn't sue him for this," Naidoo said yesterday.

He said that he wasn't really concerned about the price tag but that justice must be served in order to clear his name.

Motsoeneng's legal representative advocate Kgomosoane Mathipa said Naidoo had, on his appearance in parliament last year, called Motsoeneng a "high school dropout". He said Naidoo also said Motsoeneng had no authority to sign the R500-million MultiChoice deal where the SABC sold its archive.

During a 2017 media briefing, Motsoeneng tore into Naidoo, labelling him a "sell-out", which subsequently landed him in trouble.

Naidoo told Mathipa that he felt offended and defamed when the former SABC employee labelled him a sell-out.

"You don't take the law into your own hands publicly where if I say something about you publicly, you say something in retaliation about me publicly, that's not the way law runs in this country, he could have sued me," he said.

Naidoo said that in the 1980s up to now, people are killed for being perceived to be sell-outs or being in the wrong political faction.

However, Mathipa put it to Naidoo that Motsoeneng had also taken offence when he called him a high school dropout.

Motsoeneng is arguing at the CCMA that he was unfairly dismissed after holding the press briefing where he attacked Naidoo, among other things.

The matter continues today.