The DA Shadow Minister of Communications, Phumzile Van Damme, said that top management within the SABC must lead the way in salary cuts. File picture IOL
CAPE TOWN - The DA Shadow Minister of Communications, Phumzile Van Damme, said on Monday that top management within the SABC must lead the way in salary cuts. 

The DA said in a statement on Monday that they were aware of a memo circulated to South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) staff indicating a freeze on salary increases and the hiring of new staff.

Van Damme said it was bizarre that this part of the SABC’s turnaround strategy was not presented to Parliament.

"While it may save costs, the DA challenges the SABC’s management to take the lead in demonstrating austerity by reviewing their salaries and taking cuts, where necessary",  Van Damme said. 

"It is no secret that the SABC’s top management receive extraordinarily high salaries, a legacy of former COO, Hlaudi Motsoeneng’s overly inflated annual increases. At one stage Motsoeneng earned more than the State President."

The SABC’s 2016/17 annual report reveals that at March 2017, the SABC’s top management basic salaries were:

  • GCEO: R6.5 million
  • CFO: R4.1 million
  • COO: R2.7 million (including R11 million bonus for the “Multichoice deal”)
  • Group Executives: salaries range from R3.8 million (GE: Head of Television) to R3.5 million (GE: Risk and Governance).

Van Damme went on to add that it was  unclear what packages the new top management was offered and whether they still continue to be paid Motsoeneng’s salaries.  She called for an independent body to review all SABC top management salaries and place them at market value.

"To demonstrate goodwill and unity with staff, top management ought to commit to not only freezing in their own salaries, and not resist any advice to reduce their salaries after the review is undertaken",  Van Damme said.

"This will demonstrate to SABC staff, many of whom must be under severe stress, worried that they may be retrenched and not receive their annual inflation-related salary increases, that management is taking the lead."

- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE