Fighting SABC, soap bosses’ ‘arrogance’

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Copy of 2589529 INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Mfundi Vundla, who owns MMSV, the production company that produces Generations. Photo: Tiro Ramatlhatse

Johannesburg - The decision to fire Generations actors who went on strike was a sign of “arrogance” by the soapie's management, the Creative Workers Union of SA (Cwusa) said on Tuesday.

“(The union) is dismayed again at the continued arrogance exuded by Generations management in collaboration with SABC,” acting general secretary Eugene Mthethwa said in a statement.

“We believe that it is the right of any worker to raise issues of concern about their working conditions.”

He said it was unbecoming of any employer to respond to written demands with dismissals.

Cwusa joined the Media Workers Association of SA (Mwasa) in calling for parties to return to the negotiating table.

Mthethwa said the union was willing to mediate.

The SABC announced on Monday that 16 actors who had embarked on a strike had been fired.

The national broadcaster's spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago said the termination followed a call by both parties for the actors to return for recordings.

The cast claimed that the broadcaster as well as the production company MMSV had failed to deliver on promises it 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 embarked on a strike.

Mwasa said the dismissals should be set aside.

“This sinister and cynical move comes after repeated failures by both the SABC and the production company MMSV to engage in bona fide negotiation processes to address recurrent contractual issues of mutual interest raised in good faith by the workers,” general secretary Tuwani Gumani said in a statement.

“What we have here is yet another regrettable display of failed bargaining processes.”

Mwasa supported the actors' demands for improved working conditions, for competitive remuneration, for the consideration of fair compensation regarding royalties, rebroadcasts, sales and syndication. - Sapa



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