Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Fruitless and Wasteful Expenditure

It is with regret that BEMAWU is once again the bearer of extremely worrying news. A disclosure has been made to BEMAWU and our lawyers in terms of the Protected Disclosures Act (the so-called Whistle Blowers Act ) and some of the information will be shared hereunder.
Despite the serious financial crisis the SABC is in, money is still flowing out of the SABC as if we are not facing retrenchments. Whilst we all are at risk of losing our jobs due to the irresponsible manner in which the SABC’s finances have been managed by management, in particular Sales and Marketing Executive Management, who are still spending money on, inter alia, personal training for themselves. The HR Manager there has not ceased recruitment, and new staff are being appointed on an almost daily basis at enormous cost to the SABC.
The SABC is currently leaderless and the Board is incapable of exercising its fiduciary duties. Deloitte so stated in a report widely published by newspapers. Why is it that staff always have to read about their own employer problems and issues in the media instead of being informed by the GCEO in an open and transparent manner?
We are fast running out of options as to how to stop the flow of money from the SABC. We cannot talk to the Board, as they are responsible for the SABC's current mess. Besides, they won't be with us much longer.We cannot talk to the Minister, as she is on her way out. We cannot talk to the President, as he is on his way out.
We have seen shocking details of fruitless and wasteful expenditure that explain why the SABC is now in serious financial trouble. Here are some examples:
· Gemini Consultants being paid astronomic amounts of money (R8.2m in 10 months) and on an ongoing basis:-
o April 2008 – R4 999 825,29 (R5m)
o December 2008 - Radio Strategy – R 980 000
o UK Expenses for January 2008 – R 540 853,62
o Management Fees August 2008 – R 877 500,00
o Management Fees for the failed Convergence at Sales & Marketing June 2008 – R 877 500,00
· R 430 000,00 in March 2009 to KPMG,
· In 2007 the Board authorised nearly half a million rand (R481 707,00) for their Christmas Party;
· 31 days ago the SABC paid R175 000 for Mr. Strini Naicker, the Acting CE of Sales and Marketing’s MBA Degree studies;
· In the financial year ending March 2008 (all in the financial statements of the SABC on its website) the Board authorised expenses of:
o R220m to consultants (an increase of 70.54% from the previous year)
§ R163m (96.39% increase) of this went to management consultants – the job management was employed and paid to do!
o The Acting GCEO received a 230.19% salary increase!
o Other Executives received salary increases ranging from 30% to 59%;
§ Charlotte Mampane – 57.54%
§ Dr. Snuki Zikalala – 46.05%
§ Dr. Pat Naves – 39.31%
§ Pearl Luthuli – 31.95%
§ Mavuso Mbebe – 30.23%
o In the same period total advertising revenue increased by 10.71%
· The SABC had to pay back (credit) R80m to advertisers due to, inter alia, operational problems at the SABC;
· Since May 2008 the Sales and Marketing Division alone has spent R1.1m in placement of new employees, including almost R100 000,00 paid to a recruitment agency to place a Training Manager and R 150 000 to place three HR Temps. The most recent appointment being 24 February 2009;
Mr. Naicker’s Shopping List
· The purchasing of 7 Ipods in April 2008 for R34 078,03;
· Several bottles of Johnny Walker Black Whisky, Pongraz Champagne, KWV Brandy and Jack Daniels Whisky purchased on an ongoing basis;
o 22 May 2008 – 15 x Johnny Walker Black, 15 x Pongraz Champagne, 6 x Jack Daniels Whisky;
o 23 May 2008 – 2 x Johnny Walker Black, 2 x KWV Brandy, 24 Amstel Beer, 24 Red Square, 24 x Brutal Fruit, 24 x Savanna Light
o 15 August 2008 – 2 x Johnny Walker Black, 2 x KWV 10 year old Brandy;
o 13 October 2008 – 2 x Johnny Walker Black;
o 27 January 2009 – 2 x Johnny Walker Black, 2 x KWV 10 yearold;
· Gifts, Gratitude Gifts and Corporate gifts purchased to the value of R230 000,00 including Mont Blanc Briefcases;
· R 162 000 paid out in February 2009 for the now aborted APEX assessments where an elite group of people were appointed to take over portfolios and clients of other employees already selling to those clients;
· R107 000 paid out in two days in March 2009 for, inter alia, Business Report Writing training;
BEMAWU demands that Mr. Naicker be suspended with immediate effect, as have our members have been suspended in the past when they were under investigation. He is in a position to tamper with evidence and to interfere with the investigation. He has already threatened to dismiss the union shop stewards at Sales & Marketing.
On a more positive note, BEMAWU would like to request that you continue to do what you have done in all the previous times the SABC was faced with a crisis, which is to keep the SABC afloat.
We, the workers are the backbone, body and soul of the SABC.
If it wasn’t for your hard work and dedication, the SABC would have been another Eskom long ago. The Board and Top Management can disappear any day, and we will still be able to continue broadcasting. We trust however that someone will notice your valuable contribution and commitment to keeping the SABC afloat and broadcasting in trying times and will reward you.We undertake to make a special case for reward for our members for their years of loyal and dedicated hard word after we have weathered this storm and the SABC is back to normal.
We also know there is currently no career progression in the SABC and we undertake to fix this on behalf of our members.
Do we hear the song played by the band on the Titanic when it finally went under and is it Mr Naicker with a Johnny Walker Black in his hand on deck?


Anonymous said...

Try to get information regarding Siemens and Accenture and then you will see where the real money is wasted; the pettiness of Robin Nicholson trying to cut costs in small issues like tea and coffee is an insult to our intelligence!!!

Anonymous said...

The cheek of Robin Nicholson to go overseas during this difficult time at the SABC is also an insult. How can they carry on as if nothing is wrong at the SABC? And how can the acting GCEO run away during the rediffusion session when he was questioned about our annual increases? Can we demand to get someone else who will actually be prepared to MANAGE the SABC. We look like fools to the world outside the SABC. And that's not nice at all.

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