Friday, 16 October 2009

Suspension of Board members and Top Management

The SABC last night suspended 4 Top Managers who were implicated in the AG’s report. CFO and Board member Robin Nicholson, Mvuso Mbebe, Anton Heunis and Mabela setekge received precautionary suspension letters last night.

We welcome this, in particular the suspension of Mvuso Mbebe which we believe was long overdue.

However, the whole of Group Executive were fingered in the AG report for serious governance and compliance issues, and they should have been suspended too. We believe the SABC is creating a precedence by not suspending the whole of Group Executive and by doing so creating loopholes, deliberately so or not, for the suspended employees to win their case against the SABC.

Discipline cannot be applied inconsistently and selectively. It is trite law and a sure and successful defense for any accused employee.

As a responsible trade union we cannot ignore this important issue and selective action by the Interim Board, and we urge the Board to suspend the whole of Group Executive and institute disciplinary action against everyone implicated in the AG Report.

We once again would like to remind the Interim Board that the SABC dismissed one of our members for taking six (6) cans of Coke. This intolerance when it comes to public money should now be demonstrated and applied consistently. If not, we will reopen all cases where members were dismissed for lesser offences committed by Group Executive and argue that discipline has not been applied consistently by the SABC. This may result in legal cost of millions again, for which this Board will be held accountable, civilly and otherwise.

Why has the Regional Manager, Mr Zakes Dube, Khabo from HR in KZN and Nokuthula Luthuli  not been investigated and suspended for the fruitless and wasteful expenditure of more than R 7Million on one single case against employees who has been reinstated by the labour court? Do they have the right political connections?

Any organization will dismiss employees as quick as possible after a fair hearing for such gross fruitless and wasteful expenditure. Why not the SABC?

Who protects them?

Why do they get indemnity for gross wastage of money but poor chris dismissed for taking six (6) cans of Coke?

What is the moral of the story?

You can waste millions of public money and nothing will happen to you, but don’t dare to take a tin of Coke. Your service of 26 years will then be terminated with immediate effect.

Is the Board saying its a free for all, just don’t take 6 cans of Coke?

In terms of the delegation of authority document the Board can cancel the contracts not concluded in terms of the this document. Why don’t they do it? It will immediately put the sabc in a financial position where all the suppliers payments could be met without asking government to help with finances. Instead, to save money, employees are unlawfully instructed to take leave when no one else is one leave.

The  more things change, the more they stay the same.

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