The SABC offices in Auckland Park, Johannesburg.  Picture: SUNDAY TIMES
The SABC offices in Auckland Park, Johannesburg. Picture: SUNDAY TIMES

SABC has promised that its programmes will go on air as planned‚ despite a strike by one of the unions on Thursday morning.

"We want to say that, as SABC, we want to commit to the public that our programmes will go on air as planned‚ both on radio and television‚" SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said.

The strike action by the Broadcasting‚ Electronic Media and Allied Workers Union (Bemawu) was due to go ahead as planned at the SABC‚ while negotiations continued between its management‚ the Communications Workers’ Union‚ and Bemawu.

Parties met on Wednesday in an effort to find common ground. Bemawu said it has agreed to meet the SABC on Thursday morning to negotiate.

Unions are demanding a 10% salary increment, but Bemawu said the strike is not only about a salary increase.

"The strike is also about unresolved grievances‚ unprocedural restructuring‚ abuse by management‚ unilateral change to shift rosters‚ unilateral change to terms and conditions of employment‚ abuse of staff in that freelancers are working for years now without any medical aid‚ pension‚ leave‚ sick leave and other benefits," the union said. "The strike is about the attitude of management in dealing with staff."

Kganyago said the public broadcaster met with the two unions, telling SABC news on Wednesday evening that, "Management proposed we re-open negotiations and have a facilitator. After the meeting, Bemawu went down to meet its members and then came back and said they are continuing with the strike."

He said it was regrettable that Bemawu had decided to do go on strike‚ but that it was the union’s right. "Those that are not going on strike must come to work as per their conditions of employment. We are saying those that are going on strike must do it in a dignified manner and not intimidate those that are coming to work."

Kganyago said the principle of no work‚ no pay would apply.

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