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Study: SABC newsrooms performed well despite troubles

SABC staffers have been threatened with retrenchments as the organisation tries to avert a disaster in the face of a budget deficit amounting to billions of rand.

FILE: SABC offices in Auckland Park, Johannesburg. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - A study into the state of South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) newsrooms has found that despite the corporate capture that took place at the SABC, the public broadcaster’s news division has continued to perform well and is even growing in some mediums.

SABC staffers have been threatened with retrenchments as the organisation tries to avert a disaster in the face of a budget deficit amounting to billions of rand.

Some of the positive indicators recorded in the report show that while journalists work under tough conditions, reporters at the SABC appear to have weathered the storm in 2018.

The state of the public broadcaster was so precarious at the time that there was a point when its management announced it wouldn’t be able to pay salaries amid resignations by its board members.

However, the report notes that SABC news continued to provide hundreds of hours of fresh news and current affairs content in all 11 languages and on multiple platforms.

More recently, the public broadcaster dismissed its COO Chris Maroleng, after he was found guilty of three charges related to gross negligence and breaching his fiduciary duties as a director.

Meanwhile, another executive was placed on suspension earlier this year.

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