Tuesday, 30 June 2009

It's 1-0 for organised labour

The SABC has lost, with cost it's urgent interdict against organised labour in the Labour Court. The SABC launched an urgent interdict against the unions to prevent us from going on strike.

Now the Labour Court has ruled on it, and we may now, within 48 hours embark on a protected strike with permission of the Labour Court.

We will update you soon on the way forward.

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Labour Court

The matter has been postponed once again and to 3 July. CWU and MWASA agreed to not proceed with a strike. More details to follow as soon as I have more information. Someone is making money here...
Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom!

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Gab's Lies

The Acting Group Chief Executive of the SABC, Mr Gab Mampone is lying if he says BEMAWU did not sign the multi-term agreement. We signed it in November 2008, and we faxed it to the SABC. We have proof of same.

We altered the agreement slightly by removing one word, but apart from that, we have accepted the agreement.

We have proceeded to refer the salary dispute to arbitration.

Should the other two unions succeed on Thursday in the Labour Court, we will apply for a secondary strike, and our members will be entitled to participate in the strike.

We still hope management will come to their senses and negotiate with us instead of having meetings until 02:00 in the morning to prepare strike plans.

There is massive support for a strike from within management because you had unilaterally decided to take their increases away, Mr Mampone. No plans will keep the SABC on air should we continue with a strike.

Mr. Mampone, you have confirmed in the general staff meeting you owe us the 12,%... Honour the agreement, or we may refuse to honour it next year with the World Cup.
Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

At the Labour Court

The matter was postponed until Thursday, 25 June 2009. MWASA and CWU agreed to the postponement and also gave an undertaking they will not embark on a strike in the meantime! The issuing of our notice for a strike is solely dependant on their CCMA certificate as our members will be able to join in a secondary strike only.

I think we have missed the boat by agreeing to a postponement and to not strike.

28 June is the last day of the Confederations Cup.


Friday, 19 June 2009

SABC filed interdict

The SABC late yesterday afternoon filed an urgent application for an interdict in a desperate attempt to stop a strike at the SABC. Suddenly their arrogance is starting to make sense. They had this card up their sleeve, and what will be decided today, at 14:00 in the Labour Court is whether it was an Ace or not.

As if they haven't wasted enough money! Another court battle, costing hundreds of thousands of rands whilst employees received a ZERO percent (0%) increase and Producers and Service Providers are begging for payment - for money legally due to them.

The application was served on MWASA and the CWU and on an undisclosed group of employees. We are not sure if we are included in that group. We will in any event add ourselves as a party to oppose this application.

The SABC is acting in bad faith, high handedly and with arrogance.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

D-Day for SABC

The CCMA issued a certificate of outcome a few minutes ago. It now means SABC employees may embark on a protected strike after proper procedure has been followed. The procedure is as follows:

  • We must ballot our members ,
  • If the outcome is in favour of a strike, the SABC must be given 48 hours notice,
  • In respect of BEMAWU members, because we have structured our dispute slightly different, we will have to give slightly longer notice.

Permission has been granted by the SABC to have a general meeting with members, tomorrow at 12:00. - K1 Auditorium.

It is critical that you attend. If you don't, other people may make decisions on your behalf.

You do not have to strike if you don't want to. It is entirely voluntary. Nobody will force you to do so. It is however important to note that we will all benefit from a strike. The more people participating, the quicker it will be over.

Please attend the meeting.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

At the CCMA....

In summary:

  • Conciliation at the CCMA took place on Monday. 8.5% were offered and was rejected by the unions. The Commissioner undertook to issue a Certificate of Outcome by no later than Thursday, which will enable SABC employees to embark on a protected strike 48 hours thereafter.
  • Union leadership met with Mr. Ismael Vadi, chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Tuesday at Wits. He gave an undertaking that the turmoil at the SABC will receive parliament's most urgent attention and expressed the Government's concern that the Confederations Cup may be in jeopardy if employees proceed with a strike.
  • Please vote. See left.

In detail:

What has been called a revised offer were tabled by the SABC on 15 June at the CCMA.

Andre Weber, the notorious acting General of employee relations (oops, I left out manager) informed Senior part-time Commissioner, Mr. Patrick Stone the SABC is prepared to offer 8.5% and no more. The difference of 3.7% will disappear in thin air.

Another fatal and extremely poor managerial decision, Mr. Mampone!

You have send someone at the most critical time in the history of the SABC to the CCMA who has absolutely NO human relations and who is deeply mistrusted by the unions. No-one even listened properly to Mr. Weber who is always willing and ready to attempt to impress all and sundry with his legal technical arguments. For angry employees who has already started to embark on small-scale wild cat strikes (the sit-in at Gab's office for example) this is petrol on fire.

Mr. Mampone, this would have been the time to send your best and most trusted negotiators, not your police. If ever there was a need to spent money on a consultant, this would have been the time to do so. Those are the skills you don't have in the SABC. You would have expected in any normal organisation the Chief Executive of Human Resources to be that person. Trusted by the Unions because of the good relationship you have build with them. Instead, Mr. Mampone your CE, Human Resources has since the peaceful sit-in at your office (the office which you occupied illegally according to the Acting in higher grade Policy of the SABC) never came to work. Not that we miss her. She was in any event most of the time not there - in more than one way. Now she is too scared to come to work.

Has she filled in a leave form?

Back to salaries. Mr. Mampone has invited the unions to a meeting today. We will soon report back. If no better offer is made, we will proceed with action.

The SABC raised a technical point in respect of the wording and classification of the disputes referred to the CCMA.

Mr. Weber wanted to delay the resolution of the salary dispute by arguing before the Commissioner that the matter must be set down for evidence before a certificate can be issued.

What a stupid thing to do!

When you are sitting with a situation where disgruntled employees are already spontaneously embarking on wild cat strikes every sensible employer would want to resolve this as quick as possible. Particularly an employer who has spent millions of public money to litigate against its own employees. More particularly an employer who has the responsibility to broadcast the Confederations Cup and who is on the eve of the Soccer World Cup.

But not Mr. Mampone and Weber.

BEMAWU filed our dispute as a dispute of right. It basically means we are saying our members are in terms of the agreement entitled to the 12.2% increase and we will enforce that by way of arbitration/court action. The consequence of this is that BEMAWU members may not embark on a primary strike, but may do so on a secondary strike.

The other two unions termed their dispute differently - as a dispute of interest. It basically means they are saying their members are not entitled to the 12.2% increase but they (we) want it and we want to resort to industrial action should we not get it.

Ok, so there is method in this madness.

We have structured the disputes in this manner to cover ourselves properly. We termed our dispute as a dispute of right because we have an agreement that stipulates the SABC is liable for CPIX plus 1% thus 12.2% increase. It can however take some time to get the dispute arbitrated. So the other two unions termed their disputes as interest disputes, which will enable all three unions to strike - in their case a primary strike, and our members may join in a sympathy strike.

Our collective members at Sentech may also join in a sympathy strike.


Mr. Minister, let us not disappoint our viewers. Let us not scare away the World Cup. But please understand, SABC employees also have rights. And it is a legislated and constitutional right to strike on a matter on mutual interest, i.e a salary increase.

And PLEASE, you have now seen the results of party politics in an organisation. Learn from the past and please ensure we will get a broadcasting, and not a political board. And please get rid of the party political camps in management. Any citizen has the constitutional right to belong to a political party, but they don't have the right to practice that in a workplace where other groups of employees are discriminated against because they don't support the correct political party. We cannot again afford an organisation where you only get promoted and a nice job because you are carrying a card of the correct political party or its affiliates and alliances.


Saturday, 13 June 2009

Management by Police Force

Yesterday (12 June 2009) will most probably go down in history books as the ultimate low point in the existence of the SABC.

Who ever thought the Green Revolution would end with armed policeman flooding the Piet Meyer building (the old apartheid name for Radio Park) trying to intimidate union leaders and threatening us with military action by the Army?

Arrogant, rude and power-drunk policemen with no regard for human rights or the law.

Who ever thought being a First Citizen would mean having no voice, no right to peacefully demonstrate, no right to attend a meeting with your union, no right to attend a labour dispute at the CCMA whilst being an applicant in the matter?

Who ever thought Human Resources would mean having Group Exco being guarded and escorted by security guards in the workplace, not because there is a real threat against anyone, but because they screwed up the SABC so badly they believe they are under threat?

How badly do you have to manage an organisation that you are scared of your own, peaceful employees?

So what happened yesterday?
After our interview on Morning Live the three union leaders (myself, Lungile from MWASA and Vulture from CWU) went to the Coffee Shop at Radio Park. Shortly thereafter Vulture left and Lungile and I remained, having some more coffee. Then the police arrived. Guns, radios, spare magazines – armed to the teeth. And then some more and more arrived. Whilst sitting there, minding our business, two officers arrived at our table. The one, a “Sup” was fat, arrogant with a dirty gun in his holster. The other one a short inspector who could not speak properly, but barked at us the whole time, flashing his gold filled front teeth. He was clearly on his own planet and demonstrated behaviour exactly as they do in the movies. I think I saw a Movie Magic card in his pocket. Without telling us why, he wanted to have our names and contact details. He struggled to write it down properly and we had to repeatedly spell it to him. We were informed that they received information that there will be illegal action. We denied that there will be any illegal action and we informed them that there is a possibility that a few employees may gather at reception to peacefully demonstrate their utmost unhappiness with Group Exco and the Board. The “Sup” informed us that the SABC is a National Key Point, and any action would be illegal. When I asked him since when would it be a criminal offence to peacefully protest in a workplace he responded: “We will arrest anyone gathering here at reception.” I said to him that they cannot arrest people for that. The fat and clearly unfit “Sup” responded “You will see it today”.

What possible threat could we be - two peaceful union leaders - the one a woman sitting by ourselves having coffee in a public Coffee Shop in SABC reception? What possible threat could a handful peaceful employees demonstrating their dissatisfaction with incompetent management be?

We assured them that there will be no action, but also said to him that we will file a dispute at the CCMA, and after we have obtained a Certificate from the CCMA, we will peacefully and procedurally demonstrate.

As members have the right to know what’s going on in the workplace and unions have the right to meet with its members, I SMS’d Phumelele (Chief People’s Officer) and requested permission for a meeting at 12:30. She agreed.

Andre Weber then refused. He for the first time ever wanted to have an agenda, formal letters and wanted to know what we want to talk about in the meeting. Security police stuff. And then they send people to lock the venue we have booked.

What a sick showdown of power by an incompetent Board and Group Executive. No wonder Senior Management have also no faith in them and is calling for their resignation.

National Key point or National F-up?


We are in possession of a memo addressed to Group Exco where the Senior Management Forum demands the resignation of Gab and Robin Nicholson in particular and has put a vote of no confidence in Group Exco and the Board.

Since all three unions also filed a vote of no confidence in Group Exco and the Board, we have collectively decided, as BEMAWU, CWU nad MWASA that since we have no confidence and trust in Group Exco and the Board, we will henceforth and until such time we have a legitimate Board and a new Group Exco in place only deal with the Senior Management Forum. They together with employees and our members are the backbone of the organization and we share the same concerns and fears.

We will formally write a letter to the Senior Management Forum (excluding Group Exco) to establish a forum where will jointly make sure the SABC is managed properly and where we will address our issues and concerns. We will have our differences, but at least there will be trust and confidence from our side. We will no longer deal with Group Exco until our demands are met.

A reliable source informed us that the wastage of money is still continuing. It has been reported that Mvuso, Thelma Melck, the company secretary (WHY SHE???) and 3 other senior managers in the past week went to Los Angeles to the screening of new programmes. Whe already have more than enough programmes to broadcast, and what is he and she doing there in any event? If the SABC wanted to buy programmes, why not sending people involved in buying programs?


Friday, 12 June 2009

Light at the end...

Three more Board members have resigned.

Desmond Golding, Andile Mbeki and Bheki Khumalo. Its almost like burning the place down to smoke the rat(s) out. Indiscriminately. What a pity the good rats - if there is such a thing - get hurt in the process.

What a pity government, the stakeholder did not act earlier. Party politics in an organisation are usually very destructive. The SABC is no exception. It is even more destructive if employees are drawn into the fight for political control, without them knowing they are in fact supporting a political party and its fight for control of the Public Broadcaster.

BEMAWU is not politically aligned and not affiliated with any Federation. We do not practice party politics - we are there for all our members, no matter what political party they support (or don't support). Political parties are for politics, trade unions for workers rights.

Yesterday’s “sit-in” which happened spontaneously was NOT legal. Today’s sit-in will NOT be legal! We do not support illegal action that may jeopardize the employment of our members.

This is a call for our members to please NOT participate in the unlawful action planned for today. We believe it is irresponsible and foolish to call on employees to support and participate in an unprotected strike or illegal work stoppage.

We did not plan it. The communiqué that was send out claiming to be a joint communiqué was NOT authorized by BEMAWU. Please take note that we will never request someone else to talk on our behalf. If you ever in future receive a communiqué from anyone else but BEMAWU, know its fake and please do not act on such communication. We will use our own letterheads and the other methods of communication to inform members of meetings, actions, etc. We will use this forum in particular.

We support the principle and we are in agreement that Gab and the people responsible for the mismanagement of the SABC must go. But we are not in agreement it should be done in an unlawful and unprocedural manner.

For such action to be lawful and protected, a dispute must be referred to the CCMA, conciliation must take place and 48 hours notice must be given. Else, it’s an unprotected strike and employees can be dismissed/disciplined. We cannot criticize the SABC for not adhering to Law and Policy, whilst we also do the same.

We are at the CCMA on Monday in respect of the salary dispute.

Members who want to attend the CCMA hearing may do so. It is your right to be there as you are an applicant in the matter. The exact details will be added here soon.

If it is at all possible to be there, please come and show your support.


Thursday, 11 June 2009

Retrenchments coming under this Board?

This is what the acting Group Chief Executive that is trusted by only half of the dysfunctional board, who now has three votes of no confidence in him,

1. By organised labour at the SABC consisting of three trade unions representing by far the majority of SABC employees,
2. By the Top 100 managers of the SABC,
3. By disgruntled staff, after he failed to address staff yesterday,

is saying:

"He said all major consulting work had now been stopped completely. "There are just small areas where we believe specialist intervention needs to be done."He said a study done on behalf of the SABC had showed that the organisation had surplus staff "all over the place"."Our new operating model that we need to implement will clearly allow us to come up with an optimal structure that says wherever we have excess fat, that fat must be removed from the organisation."

What part of vote of no confidence does he not understand?

  • Why do we need more consultants (again!) to tell us the SABC is overstaffed? The mere fact that you did not ask HR to do the study clearly indicates that you yourself don't trust them. This confirms our vote of no confidence in them. You have also now effectively put a vote of no confidence in them.
  • Human Resources Management (HR), and they alone are in control of appointments. Why did they allow and made all these appointments? Why must staff who bona fide accepted employment with the SABC and left previous jobs now be faced with retrenchments because incompetent HR Management appointed them? Why do we still have those HR Chief Executive employed? Why haven't you taken action against her, Mr. Mampone?
  • WE DO NOT TRUST YOU, YOUR NEW MODEL OR YOUR CONSULTANTS TELLING YOU ABOUT SURPLUS STAFF. There is a vote of no confidence in you. You were told this three (3) times, or is it 4 times? Did the Independent Producers say so too?
  • The only surplus staff we have is the Board and Group Executive.
  • Staff did not appoint themselves. If we are in this financial crises because of surplus staff, then HR Management has put the SABC in this financial crisis. Why no action? What if they do so again?

In terms of Section 189A of the LRA employees may embark on a protected strike if faced with retrenchments.

We will not allow the SABC to retrench our members without us fighting this in the highest court.

Cutting must start from the top and end before the bargaining unit.

And whilst Mampone is saying the SABC must cut staff, the Minister says appoint more:

"Nyanda was briefed on challenges facing the SABC, including the broadcaster’s financial crisis, the salary negotiations with unions, differences between board members and the filling of key vacant positions.
The SABC has been facing a leadership crisis since the appointment of the new board in December 2007. Three board members — Peter Vundla, Christine Qunta and Fadilah Lagadien — have resigned this year, with Lagadien citing a lack of leadership at board level. A Deloitte report this year found that the board was damaged by extensive infighting and that both board and management were suspicious of each other.

Nyanda raised concerns about the negative public perception of the board and management’s ability to give direction to the operation, and reminded the board that the SABC’s mandate is to deliver quality broadcasting ."

So who do we believe now?


Night of the long knives and other short stories

  • Help, the SABC is sinking!
  • A sit-in at the Acting GCEO, Gab's office from 10:00 to 14:00.
  • A vote of no confidence in Group Executive at SMF (Senior Management Forum) by Senior Management.
  • A vote of no confidence in the Board and Group Executive jointly by the three unions.
  • A spontaneous vote of no confidence in the Board and Group Executive and a demand they must all resign with immediate effect on Wednesday by disgruntled staff and union members.
  • A vote of no confidence in the Chief Executive, Dr. Pat Naves and the Acting General Manager of Employee Relations, Andre Weber.
  • A visibly shaken Dr. Naves escorted by SABC Security to her office.
  • There is war out there at the SABC, Minister! Stop turning a blind eye and act.

So where did this soap opera started off?

Not so long ago the acting GCEO, Gab Mampone wrote what he called a thesis for his Doctorate in Philosophy which he named “Help, the SABC is sinking!” This document landed with the Board which later caused the departure of inter alia Mr. Mark Jakins, the Chief Executive of Sales & Marketing of the SABC.

Sales & Marketing is off course where more than 85% of the SABC’s income is generated.

When Jakins left, Mampone took over the engine room of the SABC. So we had Mkhonza as captain in charge of a multi billion rand ship with barely experience to sail an inflatable dinghy and Mampone in the engine room who had never before seen the inside of ship, let alone an engine room.

And they decided to change the name from SABC to Titanic. And it is exactly what it became… a pleasure ship with lots and lots of luxury for the captains and first officers (Board and Group Executives) whilst the crew (staff and senior management) had to work like dogs with not proper or late salary increases and not sharing in all the luxury.

And as we know, history always repeats itself.

Crew who is not properly treated and paid normally revolts, and this is exactly what happened. The officers (senior management) were told they will not get any salary increase this year. Well knowing how lavishly the captain and her team have lived to date, a mutiny broke out. On Tuesday, 9 June 2009 the Senior Management Forum (SMF) met with Group Executive (GE). The SMF is a fancy name for the Top 100 most senior managers at the SABC. At the commencement of the meeting the SMF asked for a caucus without GE present. The SMF then tabled a vote of no confidence in Mampone and Nicholsen, but later changed that to a vote of no confidence in the entire GE.

So out came the long knives.

Meanwhile the crew (staff) were preparing to be addressed by Mampone on 10:00 on Wednesday morning (10 June). Being faced with a vote of no confidence from his own management, Mampone decided to cancel the meeting and requested Group Communications to send an e-mail to all staff late Tuesday night to inform them of his decision.

That made staff really angry, because not once in the salary dispute saga did Mampone once showed his face in a meeting. Not once did he bother to invite the union leadership to his office to try and explain the situation. Not once did he bother to call a meeting with staff to apologise for the situation and explain why salaries have not been implemented.

Disgruntled staff spontaneously decided to go to his office and to demand an explanation from him. At 10:00 approximately 35 staff members, both unionized and not, started with a sit-in outside his office. When he refused to address the staff, they became agitated and demanded that the Board, Mampone and the entire Group Executive must resign with immediate effect.

The sit-in ended at 14:00 after Mampone agreed to meet with union leaders.

On Monday, 15 June we are at the CCMA with the salary dispute. Mampone has indicated they will come with an offer then. Why do we have to wait for the CCMA? Management by litigation?

So how do we get theSABC to not sink further?

Maybe the time has come to file an official dispute of mutual interest to have the Board and Group Executive removed, else all SABC staff (including the Top 100 managers of the SABC) should embark on a protected strike?

Only the SMF and staff can now jointly safe the SABC, or the Minister.

Saturday, 06 June 2009

Who are they fooling?

This is the MOST incompetent Board the SABC EVER had!!

They do not understand the Broadcasting Act at all. If they do, they are deliberately in breach of an Act of Parliament which makes it a criminal offence.

Since when can the Board appoints it own chairperson?

The Broadcasting Act is very clear on this. The Board CANNOT appoint itself or it's chairperson or vice chair.

This is what the Broadcasting Act says in this respect:

13. Members of Board.--(1) The twelve non-executive members of the Board must be appointed by the President on the advice of the National Assembly.

(3) The President must designate one of the members of the Board... as the chairperson and another member as a deputy chairperson, both of whom must be non-executive members of the Board.

(7) Every appointment of a member of the Board must be published in the Gazette.

Please President Zuma, regard this as an official complaint from BEMAWU against the SABC Board that they are acting in breach of the Broadcasting Act. Recall the whole Board and replace them with an Interim Board, as per the Broadcasting Amendment Act. A Board that does not understand the few simple sentences above should NEVER have been there in the first place. And make it a requirement that new Board Members must know by heart and understand the Broadcasting Act before they can get appointed.

The new, illegal appointment was also never published in the Gazette.

If any of our members are in breach of a policy, they usually gets disciplined and fired. We please want to see consistency, Com President.

And whilst we dusted off our copy of the Act, how many Executive committee members do we have? It cannot legally be more than 14.

“Executive committee
14. (1) The affairs of the Corporation are administered by an executive committee consisting of the Group Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and no more than 11 other members.

Maybe the SOS Coalition must start organising a mass viewer and listener march to all SABC Offices for the SABC to take note of the illegal things going on at our Public Broadcaster and to get the Board removed.

We cannot have a Board who is in breach of national legislation, alternatively is making their own laws. And why exactly has Khanyi decided to step down? The vote of no confidence was put in her by fellow board members for misconduct. Why is she allowed to remain on the Board?


Friday, 05 June 2009

What next...

So Mkhonza has resigned as Chairperson, (yipeeee!!!) but not from the Board :-((

This is not sufficient. She must GO! She is responsible for the turmoil at the SABC and the sorry state we currently find ourselves in. She should have enquired about implementation of salaries, etc. a long time ago. She should have asked on a monthly basis a report in respect of the finances of the SABC from the CFO. Maybe it was difficult to hear the employees begging for an increase whilst listening to Jazz music at the same time.

However, she is not alone. The Board, so we are told, is a collective.

What about the incompetent top management? Those who managed us into a position short of bankruptcy?

BEMAWU will be at the CCMA on the 15th of June for conciliation. We will then take a final decision in respect of the route to follow to protect our member's rights. We believe we will refer the matter to arbitration.

Following yesterday's serious intimidation and threats to discipline and dismiss members who went down yesterday in their lunchtime to witness the handing over of a memorandum to the SABC by independent producers we AGAIN hereby put a vote of no confidence in the head of what is called Employee Relations (nogal) Mr. Andre Weber and Dr. Pat Naves, head of Human Resources. We are sick and tired of Mr Weber and Dr. Naves victimising, harassing and threatening our members. We are sick and tired of the sorry state the SABC Human Resources finds itself in under the leadership of Dr. Naves. There is NO career progression structure or plan. An employee cannot, according to her, be regraded. They must apply for re-evaluation of their positions. What nonsense! What happened to performance and reward for same? We have members sitting for years on the same scale code because they cannot be regraded according to Dr. Naves. This must stop!

Please give us an employee friendly employee relations practitioner - not someone acting like a Gestapo commander that is out to ALWAYS prosecute, harass and screw employees where he can. Both other unions have put a vote of no confidence in Mr Weber and has complained about his behaviour. (Mr. Weber: "I'm only following orders!") Reality is - you do not have to follow order if they are unreasonable and unlawful. It is unlawful to intimidate employees when they want to exercise their constitutional rights in their lunch time (not working time) and to threaten them with disciplinary action. Why do YOU leave work every day before 16:30, Mr. Weber? The official hours of the SABC are from 08:00 to 17:00. Can every employee start working earlier and leave earlier? If not, why can you do so? If you so badly wants to police employees, why don't you start with yourself?

We have members who also wants to work flexi-time, Mr. Weber. Can you kindly arrange for them to do so? They want to start working at 06:00 and they want to leave at 15:00. Some wants to start at 05:00 and leave at 14:00. They are all office workers, like you, Mr Weber.

And no, I am not stupid to ask for permission for members to join yesterday's march. I never asked permission, I wanted you to confirm their right to participate over lunchtime, because management threatened them with disciplinary action. In the same way I asked you to confirm their right to strike now for their salary increase, which you confirmed. You said, "employees may embark on a strike in respect of the re-opened salary negotiations."

Thank you for that permission.

Lastly, Mr. Weber and Dr. Naves, you are solely responsible for BEMAWU now hardening our attitude and stance in respect of the salary increases. We want the 12.2% and nothing less!


Wednesday, 03 June 2009

Remove these clown...

The SABC has now lost it completely! What happened to constitutional rights? See correspondence between BEMAWU and SABC Management hereunder. We wrote the letter to the SABC to confirm employee's constitutional rights to join the march because individual members informed their line managers (for the sake of courtesy) of their intention to join and they were threatened with dismissal and disciplinary action. Please General Ghebuza, remove these clowns. They don't know what they talking about and have no regard for human rights. What happened to freedom of speech?

Our correspondence:

From: BEMAWU HEAD OFFICE [mailto:headoffice@bemawu.org.za]
Sent: 03 June 2009 01:10 PM
To: Andre Weber
Subject: Demonstration - Thursday

Dear Mr Weber, Please confirm that SABC employees may participate if they so wish in the peaceful demonstration tomorrow at the SABC during their lunch time.


From: Andre Weber [mailto:webera@sabc.co.za]
Sent: Wednesday, June 03, 2009 2:05 PM
To: headoffice@bemawu.org.za
Cc: Patience NavesSubject:
RE: Demonstration - Thursday

Dear Hannes

As you are aware that the march has been organised by Independent Producers and that same was not intended to include SABC employees. Under normal circumstances where SABC employees are involved, the necessary official notification within a reasonable time period would have been given by the unions and certain rules would have been agreed upon. Given the circumstances the SABC cannot give such permission or confirm that SABC employees may participate in the march.

Regards ANDRE


Dear Dr. Naves,

We do not understand why SABC Employees may not, in only their lunchtime (this is not working time) join a demonstration outside the SABC?

Are you infringing on employee’s constitutional rights of freedom of expression and freedom of association?

This is not an official strike and we therefore do not need to give official notification.

We would like you to withdraw your statement and threats that employees must be guarded like prisoners during their lunchtime tomorrow and to communicate to employees their right to do whatever they want to do in their lunchtime. Since when can you regulate what employees may do in their lunchtime?

We await your urgent response.


Hannes du Buisson
President : BEMAWU


Tuesday, 02 June 2009

The End of the Road?

We had two meetings with the SABC, yesterday and today. In both meetings we have demanded the implementation of the 12.2%. We have also informed the SABC we are prepared to negotiate but they must adhere to the agreement and implement CPIX +1 until we have come to another agreement. They have refused to do so. We are now proceeding with legal action.

The other two unions, MWASA and CWU declared a deadlock and indications are they will now embark on a strike.