ANC warns SABC not to cut jobs, reminds broadcaster of bailout

ANC warns SABC not to cut jobs, reminds broadcaster of bailout

- The ruling party has allegedly summoned the SABC to question the public broadcaster about its decision to cut jobs

- The public broadcaster earlier announced that it would be cutting the jobs of 600 employees

- 1 200 freelance staff are also set to be let go as part of the new operating strategy for the SABC

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The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has been warned by the ANC against proceeding with its planned job cuts.

In June, the broadcasting network issued a notice of possible redundancies that will affect some 600 employees and 1 200 freelance workers.

The ANC this week allegedly warned the SABC that its decision to lay off employees would embarrass the governing party and could cost it votes during local elections next year.

ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte

ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte
Source: UGC

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City Press reported that the cash-strapped public broadcaster’s bosses met with ANC bosses at the party’s Luthuli House headquarters and were questions about the plan to retrench 600 full-time employees and terminate the contracts of 1 200 freelance staff.

At the recent meeting between the ANC and the SABC, the ruling party reportedly reminded the SABC that it supported the broadcaster’s R3.2 billion bailout last year.

The ANC was represented by deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte, Deputy Communications Minister Pinky Kekana and South African Communist Party (SACP) first deputy general secretary Solly Mapaila.

BusinessLIVE reported that unions are challenging the move by the public broadcaster and claimed they will will hold nothing back in the fight for people employees to keep their jobs.

This is the second time in less than two years that the SABC’s attempt to cut its wage bill is running into political resistance.

Last year’s attempt to lay off 981 employees was abandoned after massive criticism from labour and governing party figures.

The SABC previously said these planned job cuts comprise a key part of its new turnaround strategy, which focuses on making the company sustainable and self-sufficient, said News24.

The notice to the employees followed the launch of the SABC’s new Target Operating Model, a strategic renewal initiative aimed at transforming the Corporation into a financially sustainable, self-sufficient and fit-for-purpose public broadcaster.

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