Saturday, March 28, 2020

Coronavirus: A second SABC staffer tests positive for Covid-19 this time at its Auckland Park headquarters in the SABC News research division.

by Thinus Ferreira

A second SABC staffer has tested positive for the Covid-19 virus as the novel coronavirus spreads in South Africa and globally in the pandemic, this time inside the South African public broadcaster's Auckland Park headquarters where the staffer is working for the SABC News research division.

The positive Covid-19 case is the second at the SABC after the first SABC staffer, Ulrich Hendriks, tested positive on Thursday at the SABC's Kimberley provincial office in the Northern Cape office.

All SABC staffers there have been quarantined while the Kimberley office is being disinfected.

The second SABC staffer works inside the SABC News research division and is currently in sick leave in hospital.

All staffers within the same division as the ill and hospitalised worker are already working from home as part of the SABC's back-up plan.

In an internal SABC memo to staffers that was leaked to the press, the SABC tells personnel that the workers is "currently hospitalised" while other staffers were told as part of "a contingency measure" to work from home.

The staffers has a close relative who works in the SABC News digital news division.

The SABC has set up a disaster recovery site away from its Auckland Park headquarters in Johannesburg, consisting out of Outside Broadcast (OB) vans.

This site will take over in case of emergency to ensure that SABC TV and radio broadcasts continue uninterrupted. Two more studios at Auckland Park have been reserved for use by the department of education from which educational programming will be produced during the national lockdown period.