The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has issued a notice of possible redundancies following consultations with key stakeholders.
“The notice follows the launch of the SABC’s new Target Operating Model – a strategic renewal initiative aimed at transforming the Corporation into a financially sustainable, self-sufficient, and fit-for-purpose public broadcaster,” the public broadcaster said.
“The SABC has a duty to ensure the continued viability of the Corporation so that it may fulfil its public mandate and effectively serve the millions of South Africans who rely on it for education, information, and entertainment.”
The SABC said the notice of redundancies will impact approximately 600 employees.
These affected employees will be invited to make representations during a consultation process which will be facilitated by the CCMA, the company said.
“This is to ensure full transparency, accountability and impartiality in terms of the Labour Relations Act 66 of 1995,” the SABC said.
“Organised labour, as well as representatives of the non-unionised employees, will be consulted within a meaningful joint consensus-seeking process as mandated by Section 189 of the LRA.”
Previous job cuts
In 2018, the broadcaster issued a notice to staff stating that it will retrench 981 permanent employees and 1,200 freelancers in an effort to save costs.
In 2019, the issue made headlines again when the SABC planned to close five offices, cut a third of its staff, and reduce management by 37% to turn the ailing company around.
These planned jobs cuts did not transpire and the SABC instead relied on a R3.2-billion bailout from the government to continue operating.
TV with Thinus reported that the SABC has been severely impacted by the ongoing economic downturn, changing consumer needs, and rapid technological advancements.
“The newly-developed target operating model enables the SABC to reinvent itself, review its business model and revenue portfolio, and to holistically reassess its input costs as well its resource capacity,” the SABC said.
This process, SABC CEO Madoda Mxakwe said, is aimed at “ensuring the long-term existence of a resilient and sustainable public broadcaster”.