Uzalo producers claim it's business as usual, despite 'SABC salary fears'

25 June 2019 - 07:00 By Kyle Zeeman
Fears are mounting that the SABC's financial woes will affect production if salaries can not be paid.
Fears are mounting that the SABC's financial woes will affect production if salaries can not be paid.
Image: Waldo Swiegers / Sunday Times

The producers of SABC soapie Uzalo, Stained Glass Pictures, have hit back at reports that cast and crew are "shaken" by the current financial crisis at the SABC and worried that they may not be paid their salaries this month. 

According to Sunday Sun, the struggle to keep the lights on at the SABC has affected some of the talent at Uzalo, who are allegedly scared that this could result in them not getting paid at the end of the month.

Affected staff were apparently informed that the production company was waiting for outstanding payments from the SABC at the start of the month. 

"This is frustrating. What makes us worried is that each time the SABC announces that they didn't have money, production houses always don't get paid," an insider told the tabloid.

These claims come hot on the heels of a Sunday Times report, which brought to light the SABC's "decision" to pay its staff, despite still having an "eight-figure municipality account" to settle.

However, Uzalo publicist Marang Setshwaelo told TshisaLIVE that producers were not aware of any fears on set and that it had always been open about its payment issues, while working with the SABC on solutions.

"This is the first we are hearing of any such unease from the Uzalo team. As Stained Glass, we have always been candid where there may be payment issues, and jointly worked on a solution with the broadcaster and our cast and crew. As things stand, it is business as usual on set."

Uzalo has been hit by financial problems before, halting production in August last year after salaries were not paid. In a statement at the time, the production house explained that staff decided to suspend their services after they were not paid their salaries.

Attempts by TshisaLIVE to get comment from other SABC productions including Skeem Saam and Generations:The Legacy was unsuccessful by the time of publishing.