Friday, 30 May 2008


The Broadcast, Electronic, Media & Allied Workers Union (BEMAWU) calls on the SABC Board to step down with immediate effect.

This Board has brought the SABC’s reputation and name into serious disrepute and is not competent to oversee such an important organization.

Despite the fact that the Board has no less than 3 lawyers on it and that it has access to external legal advice, it has chosen to unlawfully and unprocedurally suspend the Group Chief Executive and by doing so making themselves guilty of fruitless and wasteful expenditure as contemplated by the Public Finance Management Act.

BEMAWU insists that the chairperson of the Board be personally liable in terms of the Public Finance Management Act for the wasted legal cost incurred by the SABC in attempting to defend the unlawful actions of the Board’s Chairperson.

The Board has a fiduciary duty to always act in the best interest of the organization. Had this fiasco happened in any private company the shareholders would have long ago called a meeting and fired the entire board.

Why does the SABC shareholder turns a blind eye?

Why is there no intervention from the shareholder to fire the entire board who supported the unlawful and unprocedural action of the chairperson?

In terms of SABC Policy an employee may not be suspended without affording that employee the opportunity to respond to the allegations and to afford the employee an opportunity to make submissions to not be suspended.

This did not happen. Why not?

Never in the history of the SABC has any employee been served with a suspension letter outside working hours.

Furthermore, and in terms of the SABC’s Personnel Regulations an employee may only be suspended for serious misconduct such as assault, theft and fraud. This is what Section 12 of the Personnel Regulation states:


Where, prima facie, an employee has inter alia committed an act of serious misconduct such as assault or theft or fraud, the employee may be suspended pending an investigation and / or the holding of a disciplinary hearing. The employee shall be advised that the Corporation is considering suspending the employee pending an investigation or the holding of a disciplinary hearing and the employee shall be given an opportunity to respond to the proposed suspension before a decision is made to suspend such employee. If the employee is suspended, the employee shall be advised of the suspension in writing. Any such suspension shall be on full pay.

If this board cannot get a simple issue like a suspension right, how on earth can they manage multi-billion rand deals? What if they mess up that up as well? The risk is simply to big for the country, the organization and most of all, the employees caught up in the middle of all of this. Employees stand to lose their jobs if we allow an incompetent board to oversee the SABC and make similar irresponsible and irrational decisions having a severe effect on the financial viability of the SABC.

If the board does not observe labour legislation and practice, who else will? Should one not lead by example?

Putting it differently, this board has demonstrated their lack of discretion and financial responsibility by acting unlawfully and unprocedurally on a simple and uncomplicated issue like a suspension which resulted in several hundreds of thousands rands of legal cost. They have furthermore demonstrated their disregard for SABC Policy and procedure.

Wasted money!

Why would they not do it again, with more complicated issues and by doing so put the SABC in severe financial trouble? And we all know what happens when an organization lands in serious financial trouble. They cut costs. They cut heads. And SABC staff will come in the firing line.

Will we ever forget McKinsey in 1997 that left almost half of the SABC staff without jobs?

Many of those people have not been able to find decent jobs again.

There is absolutely no doubt that this board must be replaced by a competent board.

The chairperson of the board and her followers have dealt recklessly with the SABC’s money – public money - and they cannot be trusted to oversee and make decisions that may severely affect the SABC and its employees.

If this board does not resign, let us consider to use our collective power to protect our own jobs. 40% of people in this country are unemployed. Only one (1) irresponsible financial decision of millions of rands can bring the SABC on its knees, and it cannot be undone… When it happens, it will be too late. Prevention is better than cure. We must act now! Let us not allow incompetent leadership. People who have no regard for the reputation of the SABC, the organization we work.

Give us back the pride we should have in our workplace.

An organization that has such incompetent leadership will never prosper, will never cost-effectively meet its social responsibilities in a developing country and will never become the asset that it should be to the people of South Africa, regardless of race, creed or colour.

This board has not bother to meet with organised labour at the SABC for almost 5 months now. Suddenly when the place is in turmoil, they running around to meet with unions.

An organization that has incompetent leadership is doomed, and will become a financial millstone to the Country.

Act today by supporting our demand that the Minister/Government must immediately intervene to have this board replaced by a competent one.

Show your support and comment on this article by clicking on the link hereunder.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Salary Increase

Please take note of the following SABC Policy.


When anyone becomes an SABC employee at a fixed annual salary, this salary is increased during the person's period of service. These increments could be made for the following reasons:

a) Annual salary increment

Annual salary increments for unionised employees are negotiated with their respective labour unions. The same changes to the conditions of service will be extended to the bargaining unit employees.

b) Promotion

During their career at the SABC, employees enjoy the privilege of an established career path. When employees are promoted to a higher scale, they qualify for an increment. In cases where an adjustment is not deamed to be justified, prior consultation with the employee will take place.

Employees can also be promoted into a different higher position, without applying for such a position after it has been established that the employee is the most suitable candidate for such a position.

c) Internal appointments

Employees may apply for any vacant post in their own business unit or in another business unit, that is at the same or higher level than their current post. If successful and appointed, the employee will qualify for a salary adjustment. In cases where an adjustment is not deamed to be justified, prior consultation with the employee will take place.

d) Ad hoc increments

Ad hoc increments may be awarded where justified and based on performance. All salary increases should be cleared and approved by a level determined by the Head of the Division in consultation with Human Resources.

Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Salary Negotiations 27 May 2008

The SABC and Organised Labour (BEMAWU, MWASA, CWU) have started with Salary Negotiations for the year 2008/2009 on Monday, 26 May 2008 at Idle Winds, Muldersdrift.

The SABC made an offer of initially 6% and then 6.5% increase ATB (Across the Board). Organised Labour has made a counter offer of 15.5% plus the Substantive Issues we tried to negotiate since last year.

The Substantive Issues put on the table are as follows:

1. A R16 800 p.a Housing Subsidy for all employees in the Bargaining Unit.
2. The conversion of Fixed Term Contracts to Permanent Contracts for all employees currently employed on fixed term contracts in permanent positions.
3. Gym Subsidy of R720 p.a
4. Meal Subsidy R 106 per month.

The SABC refused to engage Organised Labour on the Substantive Issues saying they have no mandate to do so.

Management requested that the meeting be adjourned. The chairperson adjourned the meeting without notifying the parties until when.

We now wait for the SABC.... again.

Thursday, 08 May 2008

Salary Negotiations - Update 8 May

Yesterday we wrote a letter to the SABC to demand that we continue with Salary Negotiations. We gave them 7 days to meet with us. We are simply not interested in their weak and senseless excuses any more. We frankly don't care about their budgets any more. We want our hard earned salary increase, and we are prepared to fight for it! Should they not meet with us within 7 days, we will take legal action against the SABC to compel them to meet with us. We have signed an agreement that they will meet and negotiate with us, and they, the SABC is in breach of that agreement.

It is this new, useless SABC Board that has stopped everything. They must be blamed for the fact that you have not received a salary increase. They do not want to give a mandate for negotiations. Maybe they should start concentrating on what they hired to do, and they should stop getting involved in the day-to-day operational issues of the SABC. They have been for how long in the seat and they did not bother to meet with BEMAWU, the representatives and face of you, the workers.

I think it is because they don't take us serious as workers. So let's raise our voice and become vocal and adamant that we, the workers of the SABC be RESPECTED and be taken SERIOUS!

You are paying R10.00 a litre for petrol (whether you own your own car, using a taxi or a bus)and inflation runs into double figures but this Board is engaged in a power struggle for political positions! How ridiculous!

Let's rise again, in unity and give this Board something else to do and worry about. Maybe their political games will STOP, and they will concentrate on what they have been hired to do.

VIVA BEMAWU.... and let the struggle continue!!!

Wednesday, 07 May 2008

Today's Beeld

A story of interest from today's Beeld newspaper.

Kaapstad. – Me. Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, minister van staatsdiens en administrasie, wou haar gister nie tot ’n moontlike 11%-salarisverhoging vir staatsamptenare verbind nie.
Haar antwoord op die vraag of staatsdienswerkers vanjaar ’n dubbelsyferverhoging kan verwag, was: “Ingevolge ’n meerjarige salarisooreenkoms kan staatsamptenare ’n verhoging gelykstaande aan die verbruikersinflasiekoers plus 1% kry.
“Die kwessie sal oorweeg word. Daar sal gevolglik ’n besluit hieroor wees,” het sy gesê.
Die ooreenkoms is verlede jaar tussen die regering en die staatsdiensvakbonde gesluit ná die maand lange staatsdiensstaking.
Die verbruikersinflasiekoers sonder inagneming van die rentekoers op huisverbande het verlede maand 10,1% bereik.
Fraser-Moleketi het op ’n mediakonferensie gesê onderskeidelik 88% en 82% van poste vir departementele hoofde en munisipale bestuurders is reeds gevul.
Volgens haar sal die staatsdiens nie die Maart 2010-teiken van 2% gestremdes in die staatsdiens bereik nie. – Abigail Isaacs