Thursday, 27 May 2010

Chief Executive, Human Capital represents junior employee in disciplinary hearing

Days ago the Acting Chief Executive, HUMAN CAPITAL of the SABC represented a junior employee in an internal disciplinary hearing.

How bizarre! The same executive is required in terms of the DAF (Delegation of Authority Framework) of the SABC to approve disciplinary action against the same employee he represented! So how do you decide to discipline an employee but then you go and defend that employee in the hearing? And then you have three of your subordinates sitting on the panel, of whom at least one is reporting to you directly (the HR person on the panel)! Then the accused employee does not appear in person, but only the Chief Executive. And guess what was the outcome. Case dismissed! Assault.

Is this a new strategy to weaken unions at the SABC, I wonder (tongue-in-the-cheek)? You simply go to the Acting Chief Executive, Human Capital who takes days to respond to letters in respect of salary negotiations, (busy office) to represent you in disciplinary hearings which requires lots of time. Or maybe it is a new way of transparency. Glasnost! You pay lip service to DAF, you recommend that disciplinary action be taken, then you go and defend the employee and you win the case. Kind of using your power. At least you can then blame someone else, who has dismissed the case. And you build a very good reputation as the best (paid) employee representative ever! I wonder what one would name such a venture? AGCERMPCS. Acting Group Chief Executive RM Professional Consulting Services maybe? I don’t know.

So Mr. Acting Chief Executive, Human Capital, what about starting to look at the interest of employees at the SABC (not by representing them in hearings) but by creating a pleasant and conducive working environment at the SABC? Like in putting structures in place to award employees for good performance? Something your predecessors has dismally failed to do. Like in concentrate on employee’s career paths and regradings, where loyal, hard working employees have not received any promotion and other than the negotiated increases for years now? Like starting a process to review the draconian personnel regulations of the SABC where for instance employees are prosecuted when they speak to the media about what’s going on at the SABC?

Friday, 21 May 2010


If reports are true that the Chairperson of the Board and the GCEO of the SABC appointed Mr. Phil Molefe as Head of News without the consent of the rest of the Board, it would constitute a very serious breach of corporate governance and has the  potential of once again plunging the SABC into similar turmoil the country experienced the same time last year. It also has the potential of seriously jeopardizing the World Cup, only 20 days away. The SABC and the country cannot again afford a division in the Board with all its infighting and have people acting outside governance structures.

The Board and the GCEO have been accused twice in the past three months of allegedly flouting corporate governance and it appears to be   

We are calling for the immediate suspension of both the Chairperson of the Board and the GCEO, and any other person involved in this serious breach of corporate governance pending a proper investigation of the matter and to avoid a situation of infighting and destabilization of the SABC at a very crucial time in the history of our country. A suspension would be precautionary of nature, and would not indicate the guilt of anyone involved.

To date the top structure of the SABC has failed to address many issues, including the most pressing one in the Freestate, where employees every day of their lives are intimidated and threatened by draconian management and the mere asking of a question can result in suspensions for longer than a year whilst others walk free in matters involving millions of rands.

We also demand that the appointment of Mr. Molefe be reversed, as it was done ultra vires and carries no status.


Thursday, 13 May 2010

Breach of Multi-term agreement

Dear Mr. Morobe,

The SABC is in breach of the Multi-term agreement between the parties. The agreement, which was drafted by the SABC (not BEMAWU) clearly stated the SABC will effect a salary increase of CPI +1% by the end of April 2010. The SABC only paid 3.75%. This is clearly in breach of the agreement. For two (2) years prior to April 2010 the SABC knew about this agreement, but failed/alternatively refused to put proper arrangements in place to comply with same.

All our rights are strictly reserved.

Furthermore, the SABC has failed to engage us further in negotiations in respect of the substantive issues and the outstanding 2.2%.

We hereby demand that the SABC either without any further delay implement the outstanding 2.2%, or urgently engage with BEMAWU in negotiations around the implementation of same.

Also in this regard our rights are reserved.

We await your most urgent response.


Hannes du Buisson

Friday, 07 May 2010

Re: Multi-term Agreement: BEMAWU/SABC

Dear Mr. Morobe,

Your letter attached hereunder has reference.

We are astounded by your apparent arrogance and lack of appreciation of legal binding agreements.

The agreement does NOT state that you may retain 50% tax. That is furthermore defined as an unlawful deduction, which will result in an official complaint to the Department of Labour and SARS, as not one of our members pay 50% tax. Seemingly the SABC has spent millions of Rands to purchase a system called SAP, which appears to be useless and not able to do a simple calculation of salaries and taxes. This to us appears to be more fruitless and wasteful expenditure and a transgression of the PFMA, should same be applicable to the SABC.

The fact that the SABC has failed to properly train people to operate SAP, alternatively has purchased a non compatible system should and must never prejudice our members.

We demand that you only deduct the correct and applicable tax, and NOT 50% failing we reserve our rights.

The matter is far from closed.


Hannes du Buisson

7 MAY 2010



Your email communication of this morning al 09:11 am refers.

I wish to advise that the SABC will honour its stated commitment to pay the 7.5% increase to BEMAWU members,
retrospective to 1 April 2010, today the 7th of May 2010.

I further confirm that 50% of the increase has been retained in order to reconcile tax and other deductions applicable to
employee because this is not a normal payroll.

I thank you for having considered our proposal for a postponement and regard that matter as closed.


On 2010/05/07 10:11 AM, "Ron Morobe" <> wrote:

Dear Hannes,
Please find attached a response to your email of this morning, regarding the salary increase of BEMAWU members.
Juliana Mdakane
| SABC Limited
Office of the Group Executive: Human Capital Services
Tel: +27 (11) 714 3331 | Fax: +27 (11) 714 4820
Private Bag X1, Auckland Park, 2006, Gauteng, South Africa <>

Dear Ron,

The SABC is clearly in breach of the multi-term agreement between the parties. Despite the valid agreement and public undertaking from the SABC, you have failed to implement the agreement after we have already granted you an indulgence, which indulgence was not an amendment of the agreement. The SABC was legally bound to implement CPI + 1% by the end of April 2010. This they knew for the past 2 years. The SABC defaulted, and requested an extension of time until today, the 7th. When BEMAWU met with you earlier this week, on Wednesday you made it clear you would not, despite your public announcement that you would do so,  be able to give effect to the agreement and pay our members by the 7th of May.

Our members are extremely unhappy about this, and there is a growing vote of no confidence in the Board and Management of the SABC. A motion has been put forward that BEMAWU must bring an urgent application to compel the SABC to give effect to the agreement, and in the unlikely event that such application fails, that we then cancel the agreement. The main thrust and motivation for such an application would be that you knew for two years in advance that the multi-term had to be implemented by the end of April 2010, and the SABC has failed to take the necessary steps to ensure same. Furthermore, that we have no reason to believe that you will in fact implement the agreement by the end of May 2010, because you have already said so previously, and defaulted once by not implementing, after you have publicly said you would and a legal, binding contract exists in this respect.

Our members feel they must always bent backwards, without any sign of appreciation and recognition from the SABC.
We would like to offer you the opportunity to restore some of the trust the SABC has lost as a result of their non-compliance with the agreement and their further undertaking, by making the following without prejudice proposal:

That BEMAWU will agree to the implementation of the multi-term agreement at the end of May 2010 on the following conditions:

  • That our indulgence and good faith be met with similar conduct from the SABC’s side, now and in future
  • That instead of the contractual 7.5%, a percentage of 8.5% be implemented, which extra percentage (1%) will be deducted from the outstanding contractual 2.2% agreed to previously,
  • That same will this time definitely happen as soon as possible, but not later than the end of May 2010.

We need your urgent confirmation of same by close of business today, for obvious reasons.


Hannes du Buisson