BEMAWU joins CWU in protest to Union Building over SABC retrenchments

10 Nov 2020 - SABC staff protesting against pending retrenchments outside the SABC in Auckland Park | Pictures: Tracy Lee Stark

Trade union BEMAWU says its members will join sister union CWU as they take to the streets over the ongoing retrenchment process at the SABC, since the public broadcaster does not want to conduct the process fairly.

The Broadcasting, Electronic, Media and Allied Workers Union (Bemawu) said its members will join its sister union in a march to the Union Buildings on Wednesday.

This came after the Communication Workers Union (CWU) served the SABC with a notice to resume their strike action as the public broadcaster forges ahead with retrenchments.

It appears that extended consultations with the SABC management to meet workers halfway and prevent strike action has failed.

According to Bemawu president, Hannes du Buisson, the majority of members who’ve responded indicated that they want to proceed or participate in the strike.

“We wrote a letter to the Board and asked for a meeting. They have declined,’ said Du Buisson.

“It’s employee’s only and constitutional defence against a procedurally unfair retrenchment process” to go on strike, he added.

ALSO READ: SABC retrenchments paused for additional 30 days

CWU had halted protests in 2020 after the SABC extended the consultation process by 30 days until end-December.

Earlier this week, the public broadcaster continued to issue dismissals and surplus letters to staff.

The SABC said that it had reduced the number of employees who will lose their jobs from 600 to just over 300. It says it has to reduce the wage bill to make the organisation financially sustainable and save costs.

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