At the end of July angry and anxious TV producers have again not been paid by the SABC with no indication of when they will get their money, while the broadcaster wants them to continue to supply it with content to ensure that "a seamless broadcast is achieved".
While the embattled public broadcaster is very likely set to announce another loss next month for its 2017/2018 financial year, it has now warned local production companies that it had no choice in not paying them at the end of July.
Meanwhile unions are demanding another pay hike with salary negotiations that are ongoing.
Nomsa Philiso, the SABC's TV boss, has now told producers and service providers that the SABC "is under pressure in the short to medium-term in respect of cash-flow due to the current liquidity challenge experienced".
The SABC told producers and other service providers it's "sorry" but had not other alternative than not to pay them on 31 July.
"The SABC management will be in communication with the service providers/producers before 15 August 2018 to forge a way forward on all the deferred commitments," Nomsa Philiso told producers in a letter sent Monday.
Producers and service providers with urgent questions must contact Renee Williams, the SABC's general manager for TV content at 011 714 6718 or firstname.lastname@example.org. "We once again apologise for the inconveniece," said Nomsa Philiso.
Last week David Makubyane, general manager for TV channels and now acting SABC3 channel head after Aisha Mohamed quit, asked South African production companies, scared away by the internal turmoil and mismanagement that plagued the SABC the past few years, to return to the channel.
"When we say 'the stage is yours' we're saying to production companies, we're saying to those who have licensed products - we're saying to everyone who's got content - we're saying this is also your stage. Over and above it being a public broadcaster, we really need to make it your stage," said David Makubyane.