UPDATE: Communications minister apologises to SABC employees for delayed salary payments

2019-01-29 12:01

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Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has apologised to SABC workers following a delay in their salaries being payed on Tuesday.

Ndabeni -Abrahams has also welcomed the "speedy resolution and payment of staff salaries following a reported technical glitch experienced by the broadcaster's financial institution," a statement read from her office.

"The Minister profusely apologises to affected SABC employees and has accordingly engaged the public broadcaster to ensure that such an incident does not recur in the future," the statement continued.

The SABC earlier on Tuesday claimed that a bank "glitch", and not liquidity issues, had caused the delay in payment. 

"The SABC reported earlier this morning that its employees had not been paid their salaries as expected, due to a technical error experienced by the financial institution. The SABC would like to advise that the financial institution has resolved the technical error and salaries are being paid," the public broadcaster said in a statement. 

"The Corporation would like to thank its employees for their patience, support and apologise for any inconvenience caused, whilst the SABC was addressing the matter with the financial institution."

News24 has also received confirmation from at least two employees that they have been paid.

SABC spokesperson Neo Modomu told News24 earlier on Tuesday morning that staff would be receiving their salaries "within a few hours", as soon as a "glitch" with its banks had been resolved. 

Momodu told Morning Live on SABC1 that the non-payment of salaries had nothing to do with the public broadcaster's liquidity, but was due to a "bank glitch". 

Interviewer Leanne Manas wanted to know from Modumo whether "day zero" - the much anticipated day that the SABC ran out of funds - had finally arrived.

"Is there still money available at the SABC or is this the day people had been dreading?" Manas asked.

"We have been told that there is a technical error at the bank. It's got nothing to do with 'day zero'," Momodu replied.

Manas asked Momodu whether media reports that the SABC had run out of money were then false.

"I'm telling you that the speculation and fake reports are not true. We at the SABC are saying that staff will be paid today [Tuesday]. There is a technical error that has nothing to do with the SABC. It comes from the bank's side. Staff will be paid today."

In December, City Press reported that the public broadcaster's liabilities exceed its assets by R1.8bn.

The paper added that only half of the television production houses who do work with the broadcaster were paid for December.

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