Joyce Banda’s four-year-self imposed exile has apparently dried up her coffers if her failure to pay workers at her Ufulu FM Radio is anything to go by.
Workers at the broadcasting media institution Ufulu FM Radio, have gone without full salaries for a period of close to two years now.
Sources within the station have confided in Malawi Voice that the situation has worsened due to careless handling of the issue by the top management, led by Joyce Banda’s son, Geoffrey Kachale Banda.
One of the sources who opted for anonymity for fear of reprisals said there were high expectations that things would improve with the coming back home of the former President but nothing has changed.
Dr. Banda returned home last month from her four year-self-imposed exile amid allegations that she took part in the wanton plundering of public resources dubbed cashgate.
“Believe me, the employees are demotivated and suffering in silence. They have been fighting with hope but salary arrears keep on accumulating with no end in sight that things will change,” he said.
Malawi Voice understands the workers are owed arrears ranging from K300, 000 to K2 million depending on their positions and grades, a development reportedly leaving the management in a fix dealing with indiscipline employees for fear of legal action.
Again, the station is reportedly even failing to support crucial operations in the daily running of the institution owing to chaotic organization structure.
“It’s unfortunate the owners don’t treat our problems as a priority. Not that they don’t have money but they simply celebrate our misery,” bemoaned another senior employee.
The sources added they might resort to seeking legal redress if the management continues ignoring their grievances; saying they have had enough.
Managing Director for the station and son to Dr. Banda, Geoffrey Kachale Banda could not be reached on his mobile phone for a comment on the issue.
Reports indicate the station has been struggling financially since JB’s exit from state house after losing 2014 presidential elections to the incumbent, President Peter Mutharika.
Cases of employees being subjected to abusive conditions by media owners and managers have been rampant in Malawi.
Recently, Media Institute of Southern Africa-MISA Malawi Chapter Chairperson, Tereza Ndanga was quoted as saying the body would soon engage media managers in the county to appreciate reporters’ working conditions.