Union will ‘shut down SABC’

2011-08-18 14:08

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) will not allow the SABC to retrench workers in order to cut costs.

“If indeed SABC wants to cut costs by reducing head counts, CWU will be left with no option, but to shut down the broadcaster,” union spokesperson Matankana Mothapo has said.

SABC board chairperson Ben Ngubane told Parliament’s portfolio committee on communication on Tuesday that head counts were high at the SABC.

He said the board might need government assistance to deal with retrenchment at the public broadcaster.

The SABC would offer packages to promote early and voluntary retirement.

Mothapo said government and the SABC continued to ignore the CWU when making decisions that affected the wellbeing of workers.

Some of the board members were abusing their position to promote their own profiles while the SABC was floundering, he said.

“Indeed the [public] broadcaster is in ICU. These individuals are hell bent on destroying the historical values ... by introducing values such as tenderpreneurship for a quick buck.”

SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said the public broadcaster reported to the committee that it had made significant progress in terms of turning the SABC around.

He said the SABC presented its plans for its continued recovery and stabilisation.

These included requests for further funding from government for its digital terrestrial television rollout, delivering on the sports broadcasting mandate and establishing a 24-hour news channel.

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