The public broadcaster is allegedly holding him liable for an interview in which his guest chose to promote the company she works for.
Popular SABC sports broadcaster Robert Marawa has allegedly been issued with a R240,000 invoice by the SABC’s sales department for giving free advertising to an insurer following his 36-minute interview with them about their new role as the referees sponsor for the South African Football Association (Safa).
According to senior staff members and sales department employees interviewed by Sunday World, Marawa allowed the OutSurance brand and social engagement representative Hazel Chimandhamba to speak about the company’s other products and partnerships and this justified them issuing him with an invoice as the interview then constituted advertising.
Another one of their qualms stems from the fact that he did all this without first obtaining the necessary permission to do so and that the interview was conducted on the same day that the announcement was made at an OutSurance event where Marawa served as MC.
“That already screams conflict of interest and it could have been avoided if he had informed the SABC about the interview, but he didn’t tell anyone” said an unidentified Radio 2000 colleague.
According to said colleague, he also sent his script to the programming manager 1 hour and 30 minutes later than he normally does.
The sources cited in the report state that Marawa has not yet responded to the invoice.
When contacted for commented, SABC spokesperson Neo Momodu said that the public broadcaster will not discuss matters of any nature related to their stakeholders’ publicity.
Another source added that he has not issued the broadcaster with any invoices for the work he has done for them since his highly publicised return in August and as a result, they may have to dock his pay if he refuses to acknowledge the invoice or respond to it by agreeing to pay.
However, there are those who are on Marawa’s side citing the fact that he has no control over what his guests choose to speak about.
The publication went on to report that they had listened to the podcast and the word OutSurance had been mentioned 23 times in the space of 36 minutes.