- Controversial businessman Mzwanele Manyi has demanded that the SABC pays him R144 million, which he says it owes to the Guptas for the business breakfast show
- Manyi purchased ANN7 and The New Age from the Guptas last year for a whopping R450 million
- He is now claiming damages from the SABC for a deal between the public broadcaster and TNA which would have seen TNA pocket at least R1 million per episode of the business breakfast show
Controversial businessman Mzwanele Manyi is demanding that the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) pay him R144 million in damages which he claims is owed to the Guptas for the business breakfast show.
Manyi purchased news channel ANN7 and newspaper The New Age (TNA) from the Guptas for a whopping R450 million. The deal itself raised many eyebrows because of the amount and the way in which it was financed.
Manyi is now claiming a total of R144,551,738.16 from the SABC for damages because it did not complete the deal signed with TNA for the business breakfast show.
Briefly.co.za gathered that according to the terms of the original deal, TNA would have pocketed at least R1 million per episode while the SABC would have been left with no income and be forced to cover the costs of producing the show.
The deal allowed the 45-min show to be broadcast on behalf of the Guptas for free, while other programs paid around R18,000 per 30 seconds. The Guptas also received ‘sponsorship fees’ from state-owned companies such as Eskom, Transnet and Telkom for the show.
TimesLive.co.za reported that the SABC is estimated to have spent R20 million on broadcasting the business breakfast show before the new board cancelled the dodgy deal.
Subsequent Parliamentary inquiries have shown that the show was a way for the Guptas to make money from the state. The new SABC board also requested that the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) launch its own investigation into the deal.
In papers filed on Friday with the Arbitration Foundation of South Africa, Manyi claims the SABC terminated the deal illegally.
Meanwhile, the SABC filed its own papers in the Johannesburg High Court to interdict arbitration proceedings. In the papers, the SABC admits the deal with DNA is illegal and states Manyi does not deserve as cent.
The deal is also a subject to the state capture commission of inquiry. SABC legal adviser Refilwe Lefakane, in her affidavit, said: "The matter is not ripe for hearing as it is one of the cases being investigated by the SIU."
SABC spokesperson Mmoni Seapolelo said because the matter was before the courts she was unable to comment on it.
Manyi also refused to comment on the matter and said his lawyers were dealing with the matter.
He only said he did not want his name involved in TNA and ANN7 matters which occurred before he completed the purchase of the companies.
Manyi said he had broken with the past as was evident by the rebranding of ANN7 to Afro WorldView and TNA as Afro Voice.
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