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Reinstated SABC staff ‘excited about returning to work’

The four were emotional today as they held white balloons outside the Labour Court in Braamfontein.

The four SABC journalists have thanked their colleagues from all media houses across the country for their unwavering support. Picture: Masego Rahlaga/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Four South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) journalists, who won a Labour Court dispute against the public broadcaster today, say they are excited about returning to work tomorrow and have thanked their colleagues from all media houses across the country for their unwavering support.



The Labour Court today ruled in favour of Jacques Steenkamp, Krivani Pillay, Suna Venter and Foeta Krige ordering that they be reinstated with immediate effect.

In total, eight SABC journalists were dismissed for raising concerns over the corporation's decision not to broadcast visuals of protests.

The four were emotional today as they held white balloons outside the Labour Court in Braamfontein.



Pillay, who is the executive producer for SAfm's current affairs, says she can't wait to resume her duties.

"Having such support won half the battle for us. We can't wait to go to work tomorrow, so to the SAfm producers - I hope you're ready."

Senior investigative reporter Steenkamp says, "All I can add is a thank you to our families that supported us."

Judge Andre van Niekerk also granted an interdict prohibiting the public broadcaster from instituting disciplinary hearings against the group.

'A SMALL VICTORY IN AN EVEN LARGER BATTLE'

Meanwhile, the Right2Know (R2K) campaign and the Save Our SABC (SOS) Coalition have described today's Labour Court judgment as "a victory against an incompetent board and the cabal around COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng".

They say he has instilled a climate of fear and intimidation at the broadcaster.

Officials from both the R2K campaign and SOS Coalition attended today's Labour Court proceedings.

The R2K's Miccah Reddy said, "We've seen a lot of courage from SABC journalists, and this encourages us, but of course the battle is ongoing."

The SOS's Sekoetlane Phamudi added, "This is only the beginning. It is a big and encouraging step but we're nowhere near the end."

Both organisations say this is only a small victory in an even larger battle.