The SABC’s controversial chief operations officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng can proudly add “living legend” to his name after receiving a special recognition award from the city of eThekwini’s ninth instalment of the Living Legends Awards.
According to The Mercury, Motsoeneng was bestowed with the prestigious accolade last Saturday at a ceremony held to pay homage to eThekwini citizens who have contributed to social upliftment and development. Motsoeneng is understood to be the first person outside of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) to receive the award. The award is in recognition of his blanket introduction of a 90% local-content quota at the public broadcaster earlier this year.
The awards, which acknowledge individuals with outstanding achievements, have reportedly left the opposition in the metro furious and questioning the legitimacy of Motsoeneng’s nomination. DA and IFP councillors have accused the ANC of turning the event into a party affair, and have also slated Motsoeneng for taking all the credit for the local-content quota during his acceptance speech at the event.
Tozi Mthethwa, eThekwini head of communications has defended the city’s decision to honour Motsoeneng, arguing the award can be given to anyone irrespective of which city or province they come from.
“The role Motsoeneng has played in securing the future of many local artists must be commended. Motsoeneng was instrumental in the introduction of a 90% local-content quota at the SABC. This has had a far-reaching impact on the lives of many local artists, and Durban artists have also benefited,” Mthethwa was quoted by the daily.
Previous recipients of the special award include organisations LIV Village, the KZN Society for the Blind, which are both located in Durban, and the Willowton Group from Pietermaritzburg.
Last week the South African Traditional Music Awards (SATMAs) announced the establishment of a special a category in honour of Motsoeneng, purportedly for his efforts in promoting traditional music.