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SABC commended for suspending staff implicated in sexual harassment

Media Monitoring Africa says it's good to see that the public broadcaster has followed through with the recommendations of the commission of inquiry.

FILE: The SABC headquarters in Johannesburg. Picture: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has been commended for suspending employees who have been implicated in sexual harassment.

Media Monitoring Africa says it's good to see that the public broadcaster has followed through with the recommendations of the commission of inquiry.

The SABC announced on Friday that it has suspended alleged perpetrators of sexual harassment and have served them with notices giving them an opportunity to make written submissions as to why they should not be sanctioned.

The broadcaster has declined to disclose how many people have been suspended.

Media Monitoring Africa’s William Bird says: “We welcome this decision, it’s in line with the recommendations of the commission that they had on sexual harassment. It’s an important first step and I think SABC must really be commended.”

The SABC won't be drawn on how many employees have been suspended over allegations of sexual harassment.

Spokesperson Neo Momodu: “The commission report identified additional employees who may not be alleged perpetrators of sexual harassment, but who may be found to be complicit by either aiding and abetting sexual harassment through their act of omitting or commission.”

At the same time, the African National Congress (ANC) says while it welcomes the SABC’s decision to suspend those implicated in sexual harassment at the public broadcaster, the victims need to lay criminal complaints with police.

“They’ve been suspended, but those who laid claims of sexual harassment must go further and lay charges at police stations. They [alleged perpetrators] must face the full might of the law. We don’t take sexual harassment very kindly, lightly and we shouldn’t,” says ANC spokesperson Tasneem Motara.

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