UKHOZI FM presenter, Sipho “DJ Sgqemeza” Mbatha, and producers Mandla Magwaza and Babheke Mthethwa, have been suspended and narrowly escaped being fired.
They were suspended on Wednesday, 18 May following an internal investigation.
Sources at the radio station told Daily Sun the trio was suspended for allegedly playing a song on the Vuka Mzansi breakfast show from one of their cellphones.
Magazwa is the show’s technical producer, while Mthethwa is the content producer.
“The incident made SABC management very angry.
“Management wanted to fire them because what they did was totally unacceptable,” said the source.
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“It happened before Ukhozi FM made its annual scheduling changes in April, but the SABC had to do an internal investigation before taking any decision.”
The source said after a long internal investigation, the SABC found them guilty and they were given the opportunity to give reasons why they should not be fired, or have their contracts terminated.
“This happened two weeks ago. After the SABC heard their presentations as to why they should not be fired, it decided to suspend them for four weeks,” said the source.
“They were warned not to break the rules again because they will be fired. They will be back at work on 20 June.”
The source said Sunday Gospel presenter, Sbu Buthelezi, was also suspended but for different reasons.
“Other presenters are standing in for him as he is currently suspended,” said the source.
SABC spokeswoman Gugu Ntuli said the broadcaster could not discuss matters between employees and the employer.
“Ukhozi FM can confirm that Thokozani “Mafresh” Mpungose will be the stand-in presenter for the Top 20 and the stand-in producer will be Thozama Ngwenya.
“The station can also confirmed that it unscheduled three members of the breakfast team following an internal investigation,” she said.