Parliament considering IFP request for urgent debate on SABC retrenchments

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Parliament’s Spokesperson Moloto Mothapo says the Speaker of the National Assembly is considering the Inkatha Freedom Party’s (IFP) request for an urgent debate on the situation at the SABC.

The party says the current impasse at the public broadcaster over retrenchments is a matter of national importance which deserves urgent Parliamentary attention.

The public broadcaster is at loggerheads with unions over its plan to retrench up to 400 permanent staff.

IFP Chief Whip Narend Singh says they are extremely concerned about what is happening at the SABC.

“Although there were discussions between the board, labour and other parties, we feel issues were not resolved adequately. SABC is a public broadcaster. By bringing it on a national stage, it gives an opportunity for all political parties to give their view on how this crisis can be resolved.”

Meanwhile, Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams is on Tuesday expected to make an announcement on planned retrenchments at the SABC.

This follows her meeting with Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi, SABC unions and the public broadcaster’s board on Monday.

Pickets set to continue

SABC staff across all regions in the country have continued to express their discontent over the planned retrenchments by embarking on lunchtime pickets.

The Communications Workers’ Union has vowed to continue with their strike, while the Broadcasting, Electronic, Media and Allied Workers’ Union has vowed to proceed with seeking an urgent interdict form the Labour Court against retrenchments.

On Monday, workers affiliated to the CWU went out in their numbers for the second week as the strike against retrenchments continue:

Workers facing uncertain times

SABC management has halted the retrenchment process for seven days, saying it will wait for a direction from the board.

However while this is the case, the future seems uncertain for SABC employees around the country who have been served with notices of retrenchment:

-Additional reporting by SABC News