Our Victories for the SABC 8 Must be Extended to All Media Workers
- The immediate and unconditional lifting of the suspension of SABC journalists facing disciplinary action for being brave citizens and refusing to undermine the credibility and integrity of our SABC.
- The protection of workers from arbitrary action by SABC management. Workers’ rights must be guaranteed.
- That the SABC’s illegally revised editorial policies be scrapped, and all journalists suspended under Motsoeneng’s edict be reinstated with immediate effect.
- The immediate reversal of all downward editorial decisions premised on the unlawfully revised editorial policy.
- That Motsoeneng is sacked from the SABC, in keeping with the Public Protector’s recommendations and the Western Cape High Court’s judgment which found his appointment to be “irrational” and, therefore, unlawful in the first place.
- That Faith Muthambi is sacked from the Ministry of Communications for her delinquency in ensuring that the SABC complies with the letter and spirit of the law as she undertook to do in her oath of office.
- The SABC’s settlement with the Helen Suzman Foundation, last week, in which it agreed to withdraw the unlawful and unconstitutional editorial directives issued by Mr Hlaudi Motsoeneng and enforced by General Manager: Radio News and Current Affairs, Sebolelo Dithlakane, and Acting Group Executive: News and Current Affairs, Simon Tebele.
- An order by the self-same court directing the enforcers of these unlawful and anti-democratic editorial directives to show cause why they should not personally be held liable for all or part of the costs of the case;
- The SABC’s catastrophic loss in the Labour Court on Tuesday, and its withdrawal of its void and unlawful summary dismissal of seven of the SABC 8, resulting in their welcome back to work, this morning.
- The Labour Court’s award of costs to the SABC 8, credit must be given to Solidarity and the Broadcasting and Electronic Media and Allied Workers’ Association for securing this win.
- There still remains no guarantee for the protection of workers from arbitrary action by SABC management such as the SABC 8 have been subjected to;
- The unlawfully revised and illegal editorial policies adopted by the SABC Board, which designate Mr Motsoeneng as the SABC’s editor-in-chief and make him the alpha and omega of the national public broadcasters editorial voice through instruments such as mandatory upward referral remain in full force and effect;
- Mr Motsoeneng continues to report to work as COO at the SABC, in spite of multiple Court Orders declaring his appointment as irrational and unlawful; and
- The Minister of Communications who has been manifestly and substantially delinquent in discharging her duties of oversight of the SABC to ensure its compliance with the Broadcasting and other relevant Acts and Regulations continues to remain in her post.
We have, therefore, begun the process of establishing the SABC 8 Fund for the Protection of Journalists because journalists across the board, be it in public or privately owned media are facing similar challenges of exploitation, the denial of freedom of expression, the space to do their work freely and in good faith, and be free of racism in the workplace. It is an indictment on this society that people whose work is to play the watchdog role on behalf of the people of South Africa are being subjected to these kinds of unfair practices. We therefore call on journalists and the people of south Africa to unite and reject this scourge of anti-democratic practices and human rights abuses in the media.
For More Information, please contact:
National Coordinator, SOS Coalition