Postbank board resigns over ‘hostile and oppressive’ Gungubele

Postbank chairperson and non-executive directors have thrown in the towel, quitting just hours before government’s briefing on the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) grant payment issues.

In their letter to Communications Minister Mondli Gungubele dated 12 September, the board accused him of an “oppressive and hostile” attitude.


The scathing letter was posted on Wednesday evening by chartered accountant Khaya Sithole on Twitter, now known as X.


The signatories said “recent events and unfortunate circumstances” between them and Gungubele led them to resign with immediate effect.

“No self-respecting board can perform any meaningful work with the level of interference, undue pressure and influence that we’ve had.

“This obviously has deeply disturbed us,” read the letter.

While they acknowledged the difficulties at the bank, the “negative treatment and hostility” they suffered, undermined the bank’s credibility.

Consequently, they wrote, they could not continue to be associated with an institution of which the board “continues to be undermined and disrespected”.

‘Situation untenable’

They listed at least six instances in which they wrote to Gungubele addressing various concerns, but got no reply.

The “oppressive and hostile attitude” of the minister towards them has become untenable, the board said.

“To date, the board has not been fully and meaningfully engaged in any of the above various cited communications.

“We believe had the Minister had a genuine interest in assisting the board to resolve these legal issues for the benefit of Postbank, he would have provided an opportunity for engagement and for him to provide a solution, if he had one, for the consequences of cancelling the contract with its financial and social impact on one hand and continuing with the current arrangement until a solution is secured.”

The group added their decision to resign after working hard to deliver the mandate, was not reached easily.


“We understand and accept the implications of this decision,” they said, before thanking staffers and other board members.

The bank’s board chairperson is Thabile Wonci.

Technical glitch persists

The bank falls under Gungubele’s portfolio.

He and Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu are set to brief the media and provide answers on the payment delays.

This comes after millions of Sassa beneficiaries were left stranded and couldn’t access their money.

According to NGO Black Sash, it is still receiving complaints from beneficiaries who still cannot withdraw their cash.

Postbank is an entity of the beleaguered state company SA Post Office, which is under business rescue. Experts contend Postbank lacks the required capacity and technical infrastructure to do the job.

In October 2022, ex-Communications minister Ntshavheni appointed the following five non-executive board directors:

  • Ashely Latchu
  • Andrew Martin Robert Mahosi
  • Vuyelwa Viola Matsiliza
  • Letlhogonolo Noge-Thungamirai
  • Lebogang Refilwe Mokgabudi

Their term was set to end in 2027.

This article was republished with permission from The Citizen. The original article can be read here.