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Bemawu’s court bid to block SABC retrenchments dismissed

SABC management halted the process to cut hundreds of jobs until the end of this month to allow for further negotiations.

FILE: The SABC headquarters in Johannesburg. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The Labour Court has dismissed broadcaster union Bemawu's application to compel the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) to retract retrenchment letters.

SABC management halted the process to cut hundreds of jobs until the end of this month to allow for further negotiations.

The union had argued that the postponement is not good enough and it was demanding the entire section 189 process be scrapped.

The SABC has welcomed the Labour Court's decision to dismiss the application.

The court dismissed, with costs, Bemawu’s application to declare the Section 189 consultation process as irregular and invalid as well the withdrawal of the redundancy letters.

The SABC said the Labour Court validated the public broadcaster’s retrenchment process.

The broadcaster insisted all those involved were given ample opportunity to engage meaningfully.

“We are now five months down the line. We have had 16 sessions [and] seven were facilitated by the CCMA. So, we have gone way beyond what was expected from a regulatory perspective and certainly from a legal perspective as well,” said SABC COO Ian Plaatjes.

Workers have been staging lunchtime pickets and unions have been trying to stop the process with hundreds of jobs on the line at the SABC.

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