Johannesburg - The ANC Youth League cannot sit back and watch local actors be exploited, the national task team (NTT) said on Wednesday.
“Our talented actors are still battling to receive UIF, pension funds, housing allowances, car allowances, medical aid and all other benefits that decent work is supposed to cater for,” NTT convenor Mzwandile Masina told reporters in Johannesburg.
“They are categorised unfortunately as freelance workers and this is tantamount to labour broking.”
The ANC Youth League on Tuesday met 16 actors from the local soap opera Generations at Luthuli House, the party's Johannesburg headquarters.
The SABC announced on Monday that the actors who had embarked on a strike had been fired.
The announcement drew heavy criticism. Viewers took to social media to express their dissatisfaction with the SABC and the production company, MMSV.
The national broadcaster's spokesman Kaizer Kganyago said the termination followed a call for the actors to return for recordings.
The cast claimed the broadcaster and production company had failed to deliver on promises made to them during their strike last year.
The cast was reportedly promised three-year contracts which they had not received. They also wanted salary adjustments.
On Monday, the actors wrote an open letter to viewers and fans explaining why they had gone on strike.
Masina said the ANCYL believed local actors should be treated better than Hollywood stars in their own country.
“SABC's refusal to meet these demands because of a pedestrian explanation that these actors want to be paid like Hollywood stars is insulting, to say the least.
“As a public broadcaster, the SABC has a public duty to create conditions for the development of (the) local filming industry and the growth of black film producers and actors.”
The ANCYL joined the ANC's call for the ministers of arts and culture, communications, and labour to help resolve the issue.