Workers of the South African
Broadcasting Cooperation (SABC) will decide Monday whether to embark on a
The Broadcast Electronic Media and Allied Workers Union (BEMAWU)
said its members will be voting to determine the next line of action in their
demand for better working conditions.
The move comes after negotiations between the
workers and management broke down. The workers are accusing the state
broadcaster of reneging on a salary increase and better working conditions
12 O'clock today (Monday), we will have a ballot of our members. There are two
other unions involved as well. So all three unions will ballot its members,"
said Hannes Du-Buisson, president of BEMAWU.
said the outcome of the vote would determine the union's action.
the outcome of the ballot is in favor of the strike, then SABC employees will
embark on a strike within the next hour or so," he said.
said SABC attributed its decision not to agree to a pay
increase to financial instability.
signed a salary or a wage agreement with the unions last year …and they were
supposed to award or to pay a salary increase…and the SABC is currently
reneging on that. They are refusing, and they are pleading poverty at this point
in time," Du-Buisson said.
described as frustrating negotiations with the SABC management.
have exhausted all avenues. On Friday, we have been in negotiations with the
group chief executive of the SABC himself and the top executive management
team. And it seems to us that they are not prepared to move from what they are
offering currently," he said.
said the workers are not to blame for the timing of an imminent strike.
is not necessarily because of our doing that this is the timing. But what you
have to keep in mind is that we have signed what is called a multi-term
agreement that is a three-year agreement," he said.
said the 2010 World Cup faces a possible strike action if the demands of
communication workers are not met.
year with the World Cup soccer in South Africa, the third leg of that agreement
is going to kick in. and there might also be a possibility of industrial action
if the SABC does not pay employees what they have promised in terms of that
agreement," Du-Buisson said.
Meanwhile, the minister of communication, Siphiwe Nyanda, has reportedly dissolved the SABC board after nine of its members resigned
over an investigation into financial
mismanagement. The legislature has also passed a vote of no confidence in the board.