Judgment in SABC dismissals case looms

Judge Robert Lagrange says he will try to hand down judgment on Monday or if not Tuesday.

Picture: Saps.

JOHANNESBURG - Four former South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) journalists will find out next week whether or not they will be reinstated at the public broadcaster with their lawyer arguing that their dismissals were unconstitutional.

Judge Robert Lagrange says he'll try to hand down his ruling on Monday.

This comes after the public broadcaster agreed to enforce Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa)'s recommendation which called for a reversal of its ban on violent protest footage, something the journalists had criticised.

Yesterday, the SABC's lawyer Themba Skosana argued that the journalists needed to allege unfair dismissal in order to approach the Labour Court.

He says in this case they should have gone to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

Steven Budlender, who represents the journalists, says the broadcaster bullied its employees and dismissed these individuals because they criticised the protest policy.

He says that is in breach of their employment contract and unconstitutional and therefore the Labour Court is entitled to reinstate them.