The South African Communist Party (SACP) on Monday, called for an investigation of the transfer of the late actor Joe “Sdumo” Mafela’s work which it said was among the national archives sold to Multichoice by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
“The national heritage, in the form of archives, that the SABC conveyed to Multichoice, a subsidiary of the colonial era monopoly, Naspers, includes Mafela’s work,” acting SACP spokesperson Malesela Maleka said in a statement.
“Those archives must be returned back and the value for money involving their transfer to Multichoice must be investigated. The SABC-Multichoice collusive agreement that gave Multichoice strategic control of the assets and related programming must be cancelled.”
Mafela, 75, died after a car accident on the M1 highway in Johannesburg on Saturday evening.
“The SACP expresses its sympathy and sends its sincere message of condolences to Mafela’s family, colleagues and South Africans at large.”
Maleka said that Mafela’s artistic career in film, television and stage, among others, spanned decades and predated South Africa’s current democratic transition.
Born in Sibasa, Limpopo, and raised in Kliptown and Tshiawelo in Soweto, Johannesburg, Mafela began his career in 1964 at the age of 22 when he had his acting debut in the film “Real News” where he played an editor. In 1974 he starred in South Africa’s first black feature film “Udeliwe” which gained him a new following among moviegoers.