Mot­soe­neng back at SABC with a blast

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FOR­MER SABC chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer and newly ap­pointed group ex­ec­u­tive for cor­po­rate af­fairs Hlaudi Mot­soe­neng has ac­tu­alised his prom­ise to come back stronger from his set­backs at the pub­lic broad­caster.

Now armed with am­bi­tious plans to bol­ster his trans­for­ma­tion cam­paign at the SABC, Mot­soe­neng has vowed to in­tro­duce more em­pow­er­ment pro­grammes aimed at up­lift­ing free­lancers, se­cu­rity guards and black-owned com­pa­nies. Put in his own words, to bring an

“end to ever­green con­tracts to make way for real trans­for­ma­tion ”.

Mot­soe­neng, flanked by his com­pa­tri­ots and SABC bosses act­ing group chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer James Aguma and COO Bessie Tug­wana, re­vealed the SABC was go­ing to in­tro­duce new plans to im­prove the lives of their free­lancers by in­creas­ing their con­tracts from three years to five years.

He re­vealed the SABC would also in­tro­duce a pol­icy to al­low free­lancers to have ac­cess to ma­ter­nity ben­e­fits, which will see them en­ti­tled to half of their salary when on ma­ter­nity leave.

Mot­soe­neng said that the de­ci­sion was in­formed by the SABC s

’ de­ci­sion to con­trib­ute to­wards tack­ling the coun­try s three

’ mul­ti­ple chal­lenges of poverty, in­equal­ity and un­em­ploy­ment. We want them to be able to go to “the banks and ask for fi­nan­cial help so they change their lives,” he said. If you want to buy a car, a bank “will be able to as­sist you when you have a five-year con­tract, in­clud­ing when you want to buy a house, you stand a bet­ter chance to get a bond with a five-year con­tract than a oneor two-year con­tract. The time for real trans­for­ma­tion “has come, and we are not talk­ing the­o­ries.” Mot­soe­neng also re­vealed the SABC would be guarded and cleaned by se­cu­rity guards and clean­ers who were share­hold­ers in the com­pany. I have al­ready in­formed them to “form a co­op­er­a­tive, and reg­is­ter it with the SABC be­cause we want to em­power them now,” Mot­soe­neng said. We have been telling com­pa­nies “of­fer­ing ser­vices to hire the same guards when they are ap­pointed, but we have re­alised that the best way is to em­power them so they own that com­pany them­selves. Prob­a­bly when they leave here “they will be able to get con­tracts at SAA, Eskom and many other in­sti­tu­tions.

” Mot­soe­neng said the SABC has taken a de­ci­sion to add more shifts to cur­rent free­lancers to en­sure they work five days in a week in or­der to in­crease their salary in line with the SABC pol­icy to re­strict their ser­vices to the Auck­land Park­based broad­caster. Re­mem­ber we have re­stricted “them to work only for the SABC, so we have de­cided to make sure that they get more ex­tra work to en­sure that they work for five days,” he said. Oth­er­wise we would not be fair “on them to tell them they can t work

’ for other broad­cast­ers while we are pay­ing them peanuts. They are go­ing to get more “shifts, and some will also work for both TV and ra­dio to cover for that.”

Mot­soe­neng re­vealed the SABC was re­ceiv­ing crit­i­cism be­cause it changed its sys­tem to en­sure that black-owned com­pa­nies get first pri­or­ity on ma­jor con­tracts at the SABC. Peo­ple are crit­i­cis­ing Hlaudi and “the SABC be­cause we have changed a lot of things that were ben­e­fit­ing white peo­ple only,” he said. There were a lot of ever­green “con­tracts and some were go­ing for life, and we stopped those and made sure that black-owned com­pa­nies also have a share for the pie. But there are peo­ple who are not “happy with that.”

He said the SABC was now con­sid­er­ing vi­able pro­pos­als from black-owned com­pa­nies that would help bring rev­enue to the SABC. Even if there s no bud­get, we will “’ get it some­where and make sure that we give them a chance,” Mot­soe­neng said. We are not talk­ing “trans­for­ma­tion in the­o­ries, but real trans­for­ma­tion.

” His am­bi­tious plans came amid re­ports that he had promised SABC staff mem­bers sweet­en­ers as bonus de­spite the SABC run­ning at a loss of R400-mil­lion.

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