The position of SABC’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) has been fraught with controversy, so it comes as a relief to many that the position is being filled by someone with no skeletons in his closet.
This week the SABC announced the appointment of 51-year-old Dr Craig van Rooyen as its acting COO. The COO oversees the day-to-day administrative and operational functions of a business and is the second highest executive position. Dr. van Rooyen will be reporting directly to SABC CEO, Madoda Mxakwe.
Prior to his appointment, Dr. van Craig van Rooyen was the SABC’s group executive for media, technology and infrastructure. He was appointed to this position in November 2018 and his duties included enterprise broadcast architecture, driving the digital strategy as well as information technology and systems.
Previously, he worked for Telkom Business as a Senior Manager in Mobile Account Management and ISP’s) and Telkom as Senior Manager: in Wholesale Interconnect Operations & Revenue Assurance. This was then followed by his tenure at Vodacom, where he was Executive Head of Transmission Engineering and then the Executive of Group Effectiveness and Transformation.
Dr. van Rooyen is also a lecturer and Adjunct Professor in Digital Business for the Wits Business School.
Dr. van Rooyen holds a PhD in management of technology, MBA, MMP; National Technical Diploma in telecommunications technology. He attended the Senior Management Programme at the University of Stellenbosch and Converged Network Strategy Programme at the University of the North West. He is also a member of the SA Institute of Electrical Engineers.
Dr. van Rooyen’s appointment is part of President Ramaphosa’s broader agenda to clean out the government of mismanagement and corruption.
Prior to Dr. van Rooyen’s appointment, the role was filled by Chris Maroleng, who had been dismissed after being found guilty on 3 charges of gross negligence and breach of fiduciary duty. The most controversial COO thus far has been the ‘colourful’ Hlaudi Motsoeneng. He was dismissed in 2017 after he was found to have brought the public broadcaster into disrepute.
With the appointment of Dr. van Rooyen, the SABC has signalled that it aims to bring the days of controversy to an end and focus on restoring the reputation of the company.
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