The leadership of the Southern African Broadcasting Association (Saba) has blazed a trail for gender equality in African media with the inauguration of a 50 per cent female board. The new board, President and Secretary-General were elected at Saba’s AGM, which took place in the Ezulwini Valley, in the heart of Swaziland.
Saba, a key regional broadcasters’ union, put gender equality high on the agenda for its annual meeting, and Albertus Aochamub, elected for a third term as President of Saba, proposed equal numbers of women and men for the board. Aochamub is Director-General of the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC). Also of NBC, Ellen Nanuses (pictured), Chief Reporter, was elected Secretary-General.
The four women elected to the board are:
Radio Programme Manager, Swaziland Broadcasting & Information Services
Director of TV Programmes, Television Mozambique
Director, Broadcasting Services of Botswana
Soondaree Devi Soborun
Deputy Director-General, Mauritius Broadcasting Corporation
The men elected to the board are:
Director-General, Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation
CEO, Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation
Director-General, Malawi Broadcasting Corporation
Ms Marlyn Garises of NBC was also elected as CFO to Saba. Ellen Nanuses said of her new role as Secretary-General: “It is a great honour and privilege to serve the 15-member states of the SADC [Southern Africa Development Community] region and their broadcasters in this time of digital migration, multiple-channel broadcasting and content monetisation.”
She emphasised Saba’s mission to help every member state broadcaster make the digital transition, and highlighted the importance of content, that the Association would “facilitate the creation and exchange of content in the SADC region as well as the greater continent.”
Nanuses said that some of Saba’s training around content would be tailored and exclusive to women, “to have them lead the pack of those responsible in producing the content for these new [digital] platforms.”
Saba is an NGO that was launched in 1993, to promote quality broadcasting by enhancing professionalism and the credibility of public service broadcasting across the countries of the region. The Association is a member of the CBA, and is now based Namibia, but has previously been headquartered in South Africa and Zambia.