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Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams caught in R1.8 billion scandal meant to benefit matriculants

Article by Emma Clayfield

Do you remember Stella-Ndabeni Abrabams who broke the law by throwing a party just after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced level 5? Well, she has been caught in R1.8 billion TV financial aid scandal.

The Minister of Communication and Digital Technologies, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams is at the center of a scandal where R1.8 billion was sourced from the National Treasury in the beginning of March to finance a Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) project which has not materialised.

The project was meant to benefit matric students at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and 8 months later, the project hasn’t materialised

Pupils, especially matriculants from disadvantaged communities had to be up-to-date with their curriculum and through SABC’s platforms during the lockdown.

Since matric pupils have started with their exams, the project will no longer be beneficial to them as it had to assist them with the curriculum in the months leading to the final exams.

According to a source in top management, more than 880 000 DTT set-up boxes costing USAASA approximately R6 million per month have been left unattended at the Post Office.

Minister Ndabeni-Abrahams allegedly appointed Basil ford as USAASA’s caretaker who is a close associate of her husband Thato Abrahams – who also controls the USAASA DDT budget.

When reached for a comment, Ndabeni-Abraham’s spokesperson, Mish Molakeng, refused to comment and stated that USAASA was the implementing agency for this project and all questions should be asked there – not the minister.

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