Thursday, 28 January 2010


To:  Mr. Keobokile Mosweu
        General Manager
        Employee Relations

Dear Sir,

We act on behalf of several of our members.

We are in possession of documentation in respect of payments for work done during the 2009 Elections which appeared to be tampered with, with the effect that the employees on that list, of which the majority are BEMAWU members, were paid substantially less for the work they have performed during the elections. The altering of the document and the subsequent reduced payment is tantamount to fraud and we intend pursuing such charges should you fail to urgently remedy the situation.

Hours of individuals were for example altered from 41.32 to 23, 58.67 to 37, 37.84 to 23, etc. and a total of 22 employees are involved.

We demand that our members be paid for the hours they worked, as submitted and approved and we furthermore demand the strongest disciplinary action against the person who has fraudulently changed the hours. Should you fail to remedy this situation within seven (7) days of date of this letter, we will proceed with a dispute and criminal action against the perpetrator.  A formal complaint will be lodged with Internal Audit too in this respect.


Hannes du Buisson

Wednesday, 27 January 2010


Senior Manager and BEMAWU member Tseliso Leballo of the SABC has been unfairly suspended by the SABC last week (19 January 2010). BEMAWU today filed a dispute of unfair suspension with the CCMA. Last week Mr. Leballo received a letter of intention to suspend him. Immediate after he received the letter, his access card was taken away and he was escorted out of the building. The following day his laptop was collected from his residence by the SABC , his 3G card was blocked and an urgent staff meeting were called to inform staff another manager has been appointed to act in his absence. Several BEMAWU members who witnessed this informed the union of the suspension and the fact that Mr. Leballo was escorted out of the building.

When BEMAWU filed a complaint with SABC Employee Relations, his laptop and access card were returned to him but he was refused access to the SABC and his office. Although the letter of intention to suspend stated that he had until today, close of business to forward reasons why he should not be suspended, it is clear the SABC has effectively suspended him without the opportunity to forward reasons. This is extremely prejudicial and unfair conduct of the SABC and we will not tolerate this kind of high handed behaviour by the SABC. We have requested the CCMA to declare Mr. Leballo’s suspension unfair and to award compensation for the unfair suspension.

Very broad and vague allegations were put to Mr. Leballo which makes it difficult if not impossible to respond to.

On a different note...
Seemingly the new Board and Mr. Mokoetle has declared war on its employees. Whilst most serious allegations pointed out in the AG’s report and other forensic audit reports are left unattended, we received confirmation that employee’s attendance are under investigation.  According to a source the Board has requested the access and departure times of staff with the aim to discipline employees for times they arrived late or left early. What a twisted way of performance management! Should we not rather start at the core of the problem, the AG Report and get rid of the corrupt and big spenders? Should we not rather monitor performance rather to police minutes at work? Something is seriously wrong with our HR system. The SABC is managed by litigation. We see these endless disciplinary hearings of trivial offences, but no word about the serious ones.

The SABC is a very sick organisation. Until we remove the cancer, it will not get any better. It will die. To manage by fear is to head for failure.

No communication from the top, no communication from the Board with its stake holders. This year it will even be a greater feast for the media writing about the SABC. One would think that the official broadcaster of the WC would have a better attitude towards its employees.


Unilateral change to policies

Dear Sir,

It has come to our attention that the SABC has unilaterally changed policies which are terms and conditions of employment.

Yesterday we came in possession of a document dated 7 February 2008, signed by Dr Pat Naves. The title of this document is “Remuneration Directive”. In this document, which is described by Ron Morobe as a policy decision,  the policy on ad hoc increases for instance will cease.

In fact, everything in this policy is a gross breach of terms and conditions of employment and has been done without the involvement of the unions.

Furthermore, our members are denied the right to sell leave, as per agreed policy. Many of our members need this money (which will reduce the leave balance of employees) to fund school fees for their children, something they have practiced for many years.

We demand that this directive be withdrawn, and that the policy entitling our members to sell leave be restored, failing we will proceed with a dispute.


Hannes du Buisson

Friday, 22 January 2010

Kindly take note of the information below. We received the following question from one of our members:

Each year, as is legally allowed, I sell R1800 worth of leave directly into my pension.  This is tax free.  Not quite sure why, but this needs to be done for the end of the tax year i.e. I need to apply for this before salary closing for end February.  I sell leave each year at this time, and last year, I just made it in time  before we were told no more leave to be sold. Do you know of any allowance for this? (Question shortened)

The only way to find out is to apply and see if they grant the selling of your leave. It is a term and condition of employment to sell leave and you are entitled to do so. If they refuse forward me the correspondence and I will take it from there.

Tax rules allow you to pay two different additional amounts into your SABC pension fund tax free.  The R1800 you refer to, is called “Arrear pension”.  Whatever the reason for its inclusion, the fact is you can make use of this.  You also do not have to make use of your leave for this, neither do you have to pay it in a single amount.  You can have it deducted from your salary on a monthly basis as I do, at R150 pm.  
The second amount will probably be even larger if you decide to make use of this.  We are allowed tax free contributions to normal (not arrear) pension contributions of 7.5% of our basic salary.  The SABC deducts only 6% which means we can if we prefer to, pay in an additional 1.5%.  You can, as I do, also have this deducted from your salary on a monthly basis.  
You can by the way, also deposit further amounts into your pension but these will not be tax free. The Pension Fund Rules makes provision for these additional payments.
HR will be able to advise you how to request additional deductions.
Just be aware that on your annual pension fund statement, the percentage you are given as expected pension upon retirement at normal retirement age, does NOT reflect your additional contributions including the demutulisation and surplus amounts.  These are reflected on the statement but not taken into consideration for calculation of your expected pension.  Your pension will therefore be higher than the percentage mentioned on your statement.