Four SABC journalists who were suspended for not following the SABC’s editorial policy, have been let go by the broadcaster.

The four journalists – Suna Venter, Jacques Steenkamp, Foeta Kriga and Krivani Pillay – received word of their dismissal on Monday evening via an email.

“The dismissal letters state that it is common knowledge that the journalists do not respect the SABC’s management and that they would continue to undermine the SABC’s authority and its management,” trade union Solidarity said.

Krige and Venter were suspended by the SABC in June after disagreeing on whether the SABC would cover a Right2Know campaign protesting censorship at the SABC.

Both Steenkamp and Pillay were suspended after objecting to the SABC editorial direction in a letter to the broadcaster’s COO, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.

To the courts

On Monday Solidarity approached the Labour Court. On Thursday the court will hear the union’s arguments to overturn the suspension of the journalists.

“If the decision is unlawful then the dismissal of the journalists, too, is unlawful. Their dismissals should be overturned,” Solidarity chief executive officer Dirk Hermann said.

“The battle lines have been clearly drawn and we are going to involve the best top lawyers available. We believe in the rule of law and that unlawfulness should have consequences.”

[UPDATE 19/07]

News24 editor Adriaan Basson has reported that Special Assignment journalist Busisiwe Ntuli has also been fired by the SABC this morning.

[UPDATE as at 12pm: All eight of the journalists who were suspended by the SABC have now been reportedly fired. Below is a copy of the letter sent to Lukhanyo Calata, one of the SABC 8.]

[Source – Solidarity]