CWU issues strike notice to SABC amid wage disputes

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The Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) has declared that employees at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) will embark on a strike, asserting that it will significantly impact the public broadcaster.

The CWU says it is set to approach the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) to establish picketing rules related to their wage dispute with the SABC.

The union reverted to its initial demand for a 9% wage increase after the SABC rejected the revised offer of 6%, effective from April 2023. Meanwhile, the Broadcasting, Electronic, Media, and Allied Workers Union (BEMAWU) has accepted the 6% wage increase.

National Bargaining Coordinator for CWU,  Nathen Bowers, emphasised the seriousness of the situation, stating, “Today we’re going back for the second round. We have already given them all the names of our marshals in the various provinces where the SABC has offices. There are a few contentious issues that we need to iron out today.”

Bowers outlined specific issues, including picketing areas at Parliament, demands to picket at the Marx building, and opposition from the SABC regarding online picketing.

Earlier this week, CWU expressed dismay over allegations of the suspension of Chief Operating Officer Ian Plaatjies along with the Group Executive for Video Entertainment Merlin Naicker while Group Executive for Sales Reginald Nxumalo resigned.

A CWU statement said the three are facing allegations of hiding a multi million profit in a digital contract. It said, if reports are true, they are calling for an investigation to be expedited and serious consequences should follow.