SABC journalists will be back at work soon – Solidarity

2016-07-24 14:12
SABC head office in Cape Town. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

SABC head office in Cape Town. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg – Trade union Solidarity has high hopes the Labour Court will set aside the dismissal of four journalists fired by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) last week, it said on Sunday.

The union, along with the four SABC journalists – Foeta Krige, Suna Venter, Krivani Pillay and Jacques Steenkamp – approached the court on Friday to obtain an interdict setting aside their dismissals.

Another four journalists were also fired, leading to the group becoming known as the #SABC8

Solidarity chief executive officer, Dirk Hermann, said in a statement he was convinced that the union's legal team had managed to persuade the court the dismissal of the four journalists was unlawful and in breach of legislation.

"We are convinced that our members would soon be back at work to serve the public by providing information to them,” he said.

Judge Rob Lagrange is expected to indicate whether he will deliver judgment at 10:00 on Monday, and if not, it would definitely be given on Tuesday, Herman said.

Motsoeneng 'personally responsible'

According to City Press report, the SABC's chief operating officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng, may be held personally responsible for the legal costs incurred as a result of the axing of the four journalists, which could amount to thousands of rands.

On Friday the axed SABC employees argued that they were targeted because they could not comply with their journalistic ethics and the broadcaster's protest policy at the same time.

"Journalists are the bearers of ethical and constitutional obligations which go to the very heart of their daily existence," Steven Budlender, representing four of the SABC 8, told the court.

"The problem that the protest policy created for the applicants was that they couldn't comply with their ethical obligations and the policy. [They said] 'we can't do both'."


Budlender argued that the dismissals went against their employment contracts and the Bill of Rights, and that this made it unconstitutional to dismiss them.

The court was hearing the case of four journalists – Foeta Krige, Suna Venter, Krivani Pillay and Jacques Steenkamp – who were being represented by trade union Solidarity.  

The other reporters who were notified of their dismissals this week were Thandeka Gqubule, Busisiwe Ntuli and Lukhanyo Calata.

They had criticised the SABC's policy of not broadcasting footage of violent protests.

Reporter Vuyo Mvoku filed papers in the High Court in Johannesburg earlier on Friday, asking for an order that the SABC's decision not to "schedule" him constitutes a breach of contract.

Read more on:    solidarity  |  sabc  |  labour  |  media

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.