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If there’s a clear lesson from the widening crisis at the SABC, it’s that hiring executives at state-owned companies who lack even the most basic financial literacy leads only one way: bankruptcy.

You can see why it happens, of course. Many politicians of the “We’ll pick up the rand” philosophy seem to believe that “profit” is someone who flees to Malawi when facing fraud charges, and “loss” is what happens in by-elections. Fiscal competence, for them, is less valuable in a deployee than political credentials...

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