In April 2019, the investment arm of the South African Clothing and Textile Workers Union (Sactwu) hit Sekunjalo Independent Media (SIM) with a R295.6-million claim for failing to repay debts related to the buyout of Independent Media in 2013.
SIM is the company through which Survé controls the newspaper group, while Sactwu Investments Group (SIG) is one of the minority shareholders of SIM that gave Survé R150 million to fund the 2013 takeover. With interest, this debt has doubled and constitutes 15% of the union company's assets.
One of the larger funders, the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), has also launched a separate liquidation application.
SIM was due to repay the debt and interest by 14 August 2020, subject to SIG being entitled to demand immediate repayment in the case of a "default event".
On 8 April 2019, Sactwu's lawyers wrote to SIM, calling up the loan and citing the admissions made by Survé at the Mpati commission of inquiry into the affairs of the PIC that Independent Media had failed to repay its multi-billion rand debt to both the PIC and the Government Employees Pension Fund.