The chairperson of the  state-owned Universal Services and Access Agency of South Africa (USAASA) and USAF – which both reports to the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services – has resigned. By Gugu Lourie

USAASA said in a statement on Thursday that Pumla Radebe last night tendered her resignation to the Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Siyabonga Cwele.

The organisation didn’t provide reasons for Radebe’s resignation.

But Radebe said: “It has been a trying road I have travelled together with my former and current colleagues.  We have stood our ground; we have stayed the course to get the entity to its current position. We have run a good race but for me it is time to depart.

“It is my sincere hope that government will wake up to the beneficial position of USAASA in enabling the central thrust of the National Development Plan.  Until then, the work I have done with my colleagues will stand the test of time and will bear witness to the work we have done.”

Radebe first chaired the Boards of USAASA and USAF in September 2012 and was pivotal in the turning around the ailing entity.

But last month the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services said allegations of Chinese imports for set-top-boxes have sparked a wider investigation.

USAASA had awarded South Africa’s R4.3 billion set-top box tender to 26 bidders.

FIN24 said last month that the planned probe by the Department of Communications is just the latest in a series of controversies regarding South Africa’s digital migration process.

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