SABC urged to act swiftly against perpetrators of sexual harassment

2018-11-06 22:09


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The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) has urged the SABC to implement the recommendations of a commission of inquiry into sexual harassment allegations at the corporation without delay.

The commission, led by Barbara Watson, made known its findings and recommendations on Tuesday at the SABC headquarters in Auckland Park.

The broadcaster's board and group CEO Madoda Mxakwe said the recommendations would be enforced and a monitoring body would be commissioned.

Watson found that the SABC failed to protect alleged victims of sexual abuse and did nothing to hold those alleged to be perpetrators to account.

Saftu has also called on other SABC employees who may have been victims of sexual harassment within the organisation to come forward.

"We welcome the report, these are serious allegations against managers, and the recommendations should be implemented without delay," said spokesperson Patrick Craven.

'Law should take its course'

The commission found that managers, particularly those in positions of power at the corporation, were named among the alleged perpetrators.

Craven said it was those people who needed to face both internal and legal action.

"It should be normal procedure that when such allegations are raised, the law should take its course," Craven said.

ALSO READ: Sexual harassment cases at the SABC swept under the carpet - commission

Watson told journalists on Tuesday that the SABC had made known its intention to commission her to monitor the commission's recommendations.

Some of the suggestions from Watson's team include starting gender desks or gender focal points within the broadcaster that victims can easily access, and the establishment of a structure outside HR that will implement recommendations of the commission's report.

The Broadcasting, Electronic, Media and Allied Workers' Union said it welcomed the fact that the probe into the allegations had come to an end, and called for those found to have infringed on anybody's rights to be prosecuted.

"Based on the number of complaints, and the reluctance of the SABC and its HR to deal with the sexual harassment cases, there should be a monitoring body to [oversee] the implementation of the commission's recommendations," spokesperson Hannes du Buisson said.

The Watson commission interviewed 11 alleged perpetrators, others refused to make their submissions.

Ten alleged victims approached the sitting and seven whistleblowers contributed to the inquiry.

Read more on:    saftu  |  sabc

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