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M-Net fires agency over racist job ad

2017-10-23 08:59

Cape Town – M-Net has fired its recruitment agency over the “abhorrent advertisement” saying the pay-TV broadcaster is looking to employ a “white, English speaking commissioning editor”.

M-Net on Sunday axed Ambit Recruitment that the pay-TV broadcaster said subcontracted Kandhi Consulting without M-Net's permission or knowledge.

M-Net told Channel24 that it is "appalled by the advert, which was not authorised by us" and that "the advert you have alerted us to is racist, unlawful and disgraceful".

While the advert is legitimate and M-Net is indeed urgently looking for a commissioning editor for its scripted and reality division, M-Net is distancing itself from the racist advert that was contracted out and then subcontracted out again.

The job offer of R800 000 CTC (cost to company) M-Net executive position was listed as for "a white, English speaking commissioning editor as this role is for someone who will produce soapies and programmes in this specific demographic".

"Please note: We are specifically looking for a white, English speaking commissioning editor" says the ad. (Read more here)

M-Net on Sunday sent letters to Ambit Recruitment giving notice of termination; to Kandhi Consulting demanding that it apologise and remove the advert from all platforms; and to Executive Placements, the website where the ad was found, asking that they remove it immediately.

Ad is racist, unlawful and disgraceful

"M-Net is appalled by the advert, which was not authorised by us," says the broadcaster in a strongly-worded statement in response to a media enquiry.

"M-Net would never be associated with any advertisement which only invites white applicants, which would be contrary to our recruitment policy, our values, the Constitution and other legislation. The advert you have alerted us to is racist, unlawful and disgraceful."

"We have established that without our knowledge, our recruitment agency subcontracted another agency to advertise M-Net's vacancy for a commissioning editor."

"Our proposed advert sent to our recruitment agency for this vacancy made no reference to the race of the applicant," says M-Net.

"Our recruitment agency has advised us that it did not mandate the subcontracted agency to word the advert in this racist manner."

"Our attempts to reach the subcontracted agency by telephone have not been successful. We view this in the most serious light and are investigating the matter."

"We will take appropriate and firm action (including of a disciplinary nature) should we find that anyone on our behalf was involved in the production of this abhorrent advertisement."

"M-Net has a zero-tolerance approach to racism and takes incidents such as these very seriously," says the pay-TV broadcaster.

"Our employee profile is representative of our country's demographics at every level to the highest office. We have a level 1 BBBEE rating and we produce local shows that reflect our country's diverse cultures and languages."

*Channel24 is part of Media24, a subsidiary of Naspers. 

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