South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Yolande van Biljon, has sought to explain the reasons behind the executives’ plea for a R3.2 billion government guarantee.
She says the cash-strapped public broadcaster is stuck with large debts to the City of Johannesburg municipality, signal distributor and others.
The SABC’s request comes amid the National Treasury being pressured to provide guarantees and bailouts to state-owned enterprises.
Van Biljon says there have been engagements with financial institutions to help keep the SABC’s finances afloat for the next few months.
“There were commitments in the budget speech in February that a portion of the contingency reserves will be made available and we are carefully optimistic that there will be some funding support in the next 9-12 months. The 3.2 billion funding application is for a guarantee,” she says.
“We’ve already started with engagements with all the main financial institutions to come up with an interim measure – which is meant to support us in the next 6-9 months until the broader allocation is available. Apart from the salaries there are service providers and suppliers in the bigger circle that work with the organization which are all suffering as a result of what we have to deal with.” says Van Biljon.