SITA gets new acting MD

Simnikiwe Mzekandaba
By Simnikiwe Mzekandaba, IT in government editor
Johannesburg, 07 Feb 2024
SITA acting MD Simphiwe Dzengwa.
SITA acting MD Simphiwe Dzengwa.

The State IT Agency’s (SITA)has a new acting managing director, after the board appointed Simphiwe Dzengwa to the role, effective 1 February.

This comes a month after the board appointed national regional consulting services executive Ntutule Tshenye as the agency’s acting MD, following the exit of Dr Bongani Mabaso.

Mabaso joined SITA in April 2023, leaving eight months after taking the top job.

SITA’s head of corporate services Tlali Tlali confirmed Dzengwa’s appointment, saying it is “effective from 1 February 2024 until the recruitment and appointment process of a permanent managing director has been concluded.”

Asked which board appointed Dzengwa in light of the latest legal developments concerning communications minister Mondli Gungubele and former SITA board members, Tlali says: “The current board of directors made the appointment which became effective on 1 February 2024 ahead of the high court ruling.

“The current board remains extant as there is no order directing that it must be removed. In addition, our understanding is that since there is an appeal process initiated, the operation of the court ruling will be suspended until the finalisation of the appeal.”

According to the decision by the court delivered on Friday, communications minister Gungubele was ordered to suspend the “current board of directors”.

The court ordered that: “The decision by the (first respondent) minister of communications and digital technologies dismissing the members of the board of directors of SITA, on 18 July 2023 or 21 July 2023, be suspended pending the finalisation of Part B hereof.”

Secondly, the court said the decision by the minister to appoint the interim board of directors for SITA be suspended.

It added that the board of directors of SITA removed or dismissed on 18 July 2023 or 21 July 2023 be reinstated.

In a statement to ITWeb last week, the communications department said Gungubele, intends to appeal the court ruling which overturned his decision to remove several board members of SITA.

An entity of the Department of Communications and Digital Technologies, SITA has faced numerous hurdles in the past 20-years.

These include claims of corruption and mismanagement, time-consuming procurement processes, leadership instability, and a clientele that is growing increasingly dissatisfied with the poor quality of service delivery. The auditor-general has also labelled it as irregular.