Thursday, 16 July 2009

In perspective

BEMAWU, as a responsible and professional trade union believe its our duty and responsibility to put the statement "You can strike until you blue in the face" accorded to the new chairperson of the Board in perspective.

This was not said in any negative or challenging and disrespectful manner. The SABC has made another R100M deficit in the past quarter. The total deficit is now approximately R960M according to Gab.

It is in that context she has said that it is our constitutional right to embark on a strike, but it will not change the financial position of the SABC and generate more money.

BEMAWU did not agree to the 8.5% increase. We had a meeting with our members where we have stated the factual situation to our members. We have explained that we are driven by a mandate. If the mandate is to proceed with a strike, we will continue to organise same in an as effective as possible manner. We have to ballot members and properly seek mandate for each proposal put by management. This is something required by every trade union's constitution. The shouting and screaming of a few individuals can not even by a healthy stretch of the imagination be seen as a mandate. Each and every member has the right to vote on issues where their salaries and income could be severely affected as a result of a strike and lockout. The fact that we said we will again ballot our members does not mean we have accepted anything.

BEMAWU was the last union to sign the multi-term agreement. We did not want to sign it because inter alia it was so poorly drafted that it could be interpreted in many ways.

We are still committed to the process and our mandate has not changed until the next ballot. If the majority of our members are prepared to conditionally accept the SABC's offer, we would be irresponsible if we ignore that and proceed with a strike. Equally, if members are not willing to accept the offer, we can and will not ignore that, and we will continue with the strike.


Anonymous said...

What is killing me - is that we are suddenly being monitored for productivity - in edit and recording facilities where nothing is working - and then the SABC management forks out 700-thousand rand for "technical contingency plans" - OUTSIDE the DUMP it has created through glaring cases of looting and mismanagement!
Perhaps a go-slow would be the perfect solution! Then already suffering workers would keep their side of their contracts, by turning up for work- and then workers also keep their hard-earned money. It just does not make sense to ask for more money, when, in the process, one has to give up the trinkle you already receive!
Against the background of the recession - and in the light of the comment of the interim-chair, that workers can strike until they are blue in the face - it won't change the dire financial status of the SABC: not one South African, and SABC worker, can afford to give up a cent of his or her earnings at this stage - especially not to an institution whose management obviously does not care for this once proud SABC - ór its workers -OR its product!
May all those who are or have been guilty of mismanagement - of money, of power or of staff (also through ongoing exploitation) - get what they deserve!
On the other hand - should good reason not now prevail - would it not perhaps be wise to show OUR loyalty, by accepting an offer of 8,5 percent back-paying from April, and 10 from October - INCLUDING A SECTION, providing for backpayment of ALL OUSTANDING payments according to the original, signed agreement, as soon as the new SABC board (and hopefully new top-management)can facilitate this!
May the SABC - and its loyal workers - stand tall and proud once again in future - of itself and of its product!

Anonymous said...

What is going to happen from here? We were poled again and are waiting to hear what the next step is going to be.

Anonymous said...

I think when there is a contract which was signed there is a legal document bidding parties to honor that agreement. When one party is not honoring, the other party can force the other party to honor the agreement by going to court and the court will make it hapen.

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