Poor South Africans who can’t afford the exorbitant costs of pay television are going to continue to be starved of live Springboks action on the SABC.
Director General in the Sports Ministry‚ Alec Moemi‚ told TimesLIVE that the status quo will continue as they are not in a position to dictate to the SA Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) to buy the Springboks rights.
Springboks will be in action against England‚ France‚ Scotland and Wales in the end of year tour of Europe in November and those matches will not be available on the public broadcaster. The rights are held exclusively by SuperSport.
“The rugby rights must be bought on an open market and we think that the SABC must make its choices carefully and cleverly‚” said Moemi.
“Whether to continue in the current manner is prudent is a question that the board and their new acquisition strategy must speak to.
“We are in no position to dictate to the SABC whether to buy or not but we are asking for prudency in the consideration of their decisions.
“SA Rugby has a good deal with SuperSport and they are unaffected.
“SuperSport will still buy the rights and what they do with them is of little consequence to SA Rugby.”
Moemi said the current situation is unfortunate as many people can’t afford pay television.
“The Springboks have never really been seen live on SABC platforms and as the department of sport we think that this is unfortunate‚” he said.
“SuperSport works on the principle of exclusivity where they argue that if you were to see what they offer for free on SABC‚ you won’t buy a decoder.