JOHANNESBURG, 14 December 2019 – The South African Tourism (SA Tourism) Board has cleared CEO, Mr Sisa Ntshona of all charges brought against him.
A press statement, issued by the SA Tourism Board today, says that the Board received the final adjudication on 13 December 2019 from the team working on the disciplinary hearing and that the Minister had been appraised of this outcome.
“The board is pleased that the process has finally been concluded and that the organisation can return to normality. The Board welcomes back Mr Ntshona and looks forward to continue working with him as we seek to grow tourist arrivals in our sector and to build a stable organisation.
“Mr Ntshona returns to his position as CEO of SA Tourism immediately and will resume his official duties after the festive season vacation.
“The Board would also like to take this opportunity to thank Ms Sthembiso Dlamini for the sterling work that she did as acting CEO,” the statement concludes.
Ntshona was suspended on 01 April 2019 after the SA Tourism Board received an anonymous tip-off from a whistleblower. The details of the allegations were not revealed.
At the time, the board stated that it was “obligated to thoroughly investigate the allegations in the interest of all parties concerned.”
The Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, had confirmed to Parliament in July that the investigation into Ntshona had been finalised. However, Ntshona was only notified on 24 July that he must attend a disciplinary inquiry on 13 and 14 August. Ntshona acknowledged and confirmed his attendance, but on 06 August the board postponed the disciplinary inquiry due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’, with no new revised dates. Following this, the board informed Ntshona of a revised disciplinary inquiry dated for 13 and 18 September with a continuance scheduled for 22 October. That the Board only received the final adjudication on 13 December seems ludicrous.
Exactly why this process has taken nearly 9 months to conclude, and what the allegations against Ntshona by the whistleblower actually were, has still not been revealed.