South Africa: Cosatu Gauteng Calls On All Its Members to Support the Workers Picket Against SABC Retrenchments Tomorrow

Trucks of the SABC (file photo).
press release

COSATU Gauteng supports the picket against retrenchments by Communication Workers Union and other unions at SABC. The federation calls on the board and management to heed the call by the Minister of Communication not to retrench workers.

We are calling on all workers to come out and support the picket tomorrow and show solidarity to the workers there. We need to support each other on the picket lines or we will find each other on the unemployment lines.

It is totally unacceptable that in this country, retrenching workers and decimating their livelihoods has become acceptable and is regarded as a strategy and a solution.

We are angry against employers who continue to dismiss workers despite the high levels of unemployment in the country. All COSATU affiliates shall develop solidarity activities to support the Communications Workers Union (CWU) in their struggle against SABC employers who are planning to retrench thousands of workers.

The digitisation project needs more workers than retrenchment. We need creative management that could not develop long term strategies that would sustain the SABC going forward as opposed to short cut plans targeting workers thus compromising service delivery by the national broadcaster. We are also calling management and the board of the SABC to look into alternatives to safe jobs.

Amongst these alternatives are the following,

Reduce salaries of executives;

Cut board fees;

Develop a turnaround strategy to save jobs and make the SABC viable;

Re-skill the workforce in view of the dawn of digital migration; and

Bailout by the National Treasury.

COSATU also calls management and the SABC Board to be mindful of the recent job submit and its outcomes. It cannot be correct that government agreed on a moratorium on retrenchment and the SABC does the contrary. Should the SABC continue to retrench then the job summit should be rendered useless and the promises by the President Ramaphosa will have no audience from the workers going into the next elections.

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