Probe into mess at telecoms department - TechCentral

Probe into mess at telecoms department

Rosey Sekese has been given 72 hours to explain why she shouldn't be put on "precautionary leave"

Rosey Sekese has been given 72 hours to explain why she shouldn’t be put on “precautionary leave”

The Public Service Commission (PSC) will conduct an inquiry into the management affairs of the department of telecommunications & postal services.

This comes after telecoms minister Siyabonga Cwele approached the PSC for “assistance regarding the role played by senior management, including the director-general, in the dysfunction of the department”, his office said on Monday.

Cwele said he is considering placing director-general Rosey Sekese on a “precautionary leave of absence” while the probe is carried out.

“This will merely be a precautionary step and is not a punishment. The director-general will be on full pay during the inquiry,” Cwele emphasised.

“The minister has in the circumstances requested the director-general to write and submit to him reasons why she should not be placed on precautionary leave of absence. The director-general has been granted 72 hours to submit her reasons to the minister.”

Department spokesman Thulani Ngubane said Sekese does not intend to comment on the developments, or at least not yet.

The move by the minister comes as industry players become increasingly frustrated by the problems at the department, which have resulted in new policies, crucial to the sector’s development, never seeing the light of day.

Cwele said he has received concerns from individuals, including at a senior level, about the “paralysis” within the department, his office said. “The PSC reviewed the concerns and determined that the seriousness thereof warrants an independent inquiry.”

Cwele has admitted “ongoing leadership challenges” are “negatively affecting” the department’s “ability to execute its functions timeously”.

Telecoms minister Siyabonga Cwele

Telecoms minister Siyabonga Cwele

Among other things, Cwele wants the independent inquiry to probe “tension” and “destabilisation” in the senior ranks at the department, and the role of Sekese in this.

He also wants an investigation into the circumstances and the role of Sekese in disciplinary action taken against three deputy directors-general, Gift Buthelezi, Themba Phiri and Sam Vilakazi. Buthelezi and Phiri were fired in recent months, while Vilakazi resigned, but reportedly only after being told that he, too, would be fired.

The PSC will probe alleged abuse of power and situations of conflict in the relationship with the three DDGs, Cwele said.

Also to be investigated are the “irregular appointment of two employees to the same post of media liaison officer in the office of the deputy minister”.

The probe will also look into “reasons for the inaccuracies on the delegations of authority submitted to the former and current minister” by Sekese and the “lawfulness of the application of the delegations of authority by the former minister of communications to [Sekese], dated 19 September 2013”.  — © 2015 NewsCentral Media


  1. This is very alarming. I hope this review will lead to the completion of all other investigations as well, so that DTPS can move forward with delivery of it’s mandate

  2. Marian Shinn on

    The 2 SIU inquiries (Media Corner, ICT Indaba – in the main) were due for completion by Friday July 31. They should be on their way to the President to decide what to do about the findings. I will not let them die in his office.

  3. What will this probe do? Zero,zilch,nothing…it will be the same as the report from the PP on Zuma’s Retirement Pad, it’s findings will be ignored unless it carries the usual post 1994 racist Uhuru message of the need for more TRANSFORMATION.
    We all know what is required and that is for the ANC to get out of all dealings in this sector asap and to privatize the Post Office at the speed of light.
    Want a prediction on this ‘probe’? Nothing will change, nothing at all and we will still be held to ransom in receiving our post by arrogant and militant unionists at the CWU who will be threatening Cwele with “Our votes will be going to the EFF in 2016 if you dare to privatize the SAPO”
    In closing, I cannot think of two people more unsuitable to run this sector/probe than the present pair of Usual Suspects namely Cwele and Sekese. Anyone expecting a positive result from anything carried out by Cwele and Sekese should, to use the American expression, DREAM ON.

  4. The Emperor has no clothes... on

    Unfortunately the saying ‘A fish rots from the head’ comes to mind. Simply look up at Cwele (the little head) and then continue to look up at Zuma. (the big head). Both are costing this country millions of jobs and billions in revenue. The time and credibility that they have lost us can never be recovered.

  5. “Calling Mr. Cwele…Calling Mr. Cwele” Oh, Mr. Cwele while you are doing your probe thingy could you please advise us peasants out here, aka Post office Customers, just what the hell happened to the hundreds of tons of unsorted and undelivered mail the CWU militantly prevented from being processed? Was it marked Return To Sender and dumped back into the mix? Was it recycled into Eskom’s sometimes-on sometimes-off boiler fires?
    I tell you why I’m curious wife has an envelope amongst this morass containing a SPECIMEN SIGNATURE letter addressed to a bank in the UK (posted in all innocence) and we were kind of wondering if sometime you or the SA Post Office could get around to delivering this item? If it’s not too much trouble that is?
    It should not be a great hassle should it? What with the SAPO having that slogan saying ….”WE DELIVER WHATEVER IT TAKES”
    In the meantime, thank the Lord for DHL.

  6. I think he has taken a sensible approach, and is being transparent about it, compared with the DG’s actions against her colleagues. Let us wait and see what comes out of it.

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