Maneli dismisses rumour of preferred candidate for Icasa chairperson

Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams
Image: GCIS

There seems to be a storm  brewing between minister of communications, telecommunications & postal services Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams and her portfolio chairperson Boyce Maneli on who should be appointed as the next chairperson of  the Independent Communications Authority of SA ( Icasa).

Sources close to the situation alleged that Maneli was rushing the process and insisted on ranking the recommendations as he wanted Kgosie Matthews to chair Icasa. Matthews is the younger brother of  international relations & co-operation minister Naledi Pandor. He was chairperson of the Ports Regulator and has also served as a board member at the South African Post Office.

The source said Matthews was the fourth person on the list presented to Ndabeni-Abrahams.

“The minister is apparently not taking this lightly as this is an attempt to impose on her the candidate by ranking them. [The] Committee is allowed to recommend but not rank as that would be showing the preference to among the equal candidates,” he said.

Ndabeni-Abrahams returned to office last week after she was suspended for two months for violating lockdown regulations.

Ndabeni-Abrahams's spokesperson refused to comment on the issue and referred all questions to parliament‘s communications committee.

Maneli said there was no truth in the allegations as neither the portfolio committee nor the committee chairperson has a role to play in the appointment of the chair of Icasa.

“Your attention is drawn to the Icasa Act under section 5 in particular subsection 1 (B) (c) which clearly shows that it is the minister who appoints the chairperson of Icasa and not the committee chairperson,” he said.

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