There is a “boetie-boetie” relationship at eNCA where racism is prevalent and workers’ rights are trampled upon, the Communication Workers Union (CWU) claimed on Monday.
But the broadcaster’s head of corporate affairs, Vasili Vass, said it took “a dim view” of the allegations and considered racism “a scourge which we do not support at all”.
This follows the dismissal of employee Modise Morobane for allegedly organising workers into a union.
Last week the union claimed that Morobane was dismissed after raising pertinent worker issues with management.
“We need to emphasise on the question of racism. There is no freedom of association for our people anymore,” CWU secretary general Aubrey Tshabalala told reporters in Johannesburg on Monday.
Lesson on unions
Vass said freedom of association was legally enshrined by the Labour Relations Act.
“eMedia Investments (e.tv and eNCA) has always respected and observed the law, the Labour Relations Act and the Constitution, and will continue to do so.
“Staff may join a trade union if they wish to. We have never prevented any of our staff members from joining a trade union and claims otherwise are untrue,” Vass said.
CWU president Clyde Mervin said the union’s legal team was deciding how to deal with Morobane’s case and that a meeting between staff and the broadcaster would be held on Monday afternoon.
“We believe that the eNCA staff members are getting a… lesson on the joining of certain unions today,” said Mervin, adding that the outcome of this meeting would determine their way forward.
Morobane could not be immediately reached for comment.