Bemawu to meet with CWU to discuss possible strike at SABC

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The Broadcasting, Electronic, Media and Allied Workers Union (Bemawu) says it will be meeting the sister union, the Communication Workers Union (CWU) Tuesday afternoon to discuss a possible joint strike at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) to try and stop the retrenchment of more than 300 permanent workers.

The public broadcaster has continued to issue letters of redundancy and surplus to affected staff.

In November last year, the CWU went on strike but suspended the action after the SABC agreed to extend consultations until the end of December.

The employer temporarily halted the section 189 process. But it’s now back on track with the termination of employment letters handed out to affected employees this week.

The SABC, which is expected to shed at least 303 jobs, says it has to reduce the wage bill to make the public broadcaster financially sustainable.

Bemawu spokesperson, Hannes du Buisson says they hope a strike will not be necessary.

“We have the CEO on record that this is a protected strike; therefore any employee at the SABC will be entitled to join in that particular strike and to participate in it. We of course hope that that won’t be necessary, we do not want to further destabilise the SABC. But if we’re not being listened to by the SABC, that will be now the quickest and surest way to deal with the SABC,” says Bemawu spokesperson, Hannes du Buisson.

Bemawu last month lost its bid to compel the SABC to retract redundancy letters issued as part of its restructuring process.

The labour court dismissed the application: