The Zambia Union of Journalists (ZUJ) has called on the Government to bail out Times Printpak Zambia Limited and save the nearly 170 unionized workers from the current hardships.
ZUJ President James Muyanwa has told QFM News in a statement that the unionised employees at Times Printpak, the publisher of Times of Zambia and Sunday Times of Zambia newspapers, have suffered long enough and deserve a bail-out package.
Mr. Muyanwa says the workers have been getting their salaries late for about four years now citing that currently they are in two-month salary arrears, and have literally been surviving by the grace of God.
Mr Muyanwa has suggested that through its subvention, the government should take up the repayment of the company contracted for the purchase of a printing machine and the payment of retirees’ terminal benefits which are taking up most of the monthly revenue for the company.
He adds that the situation has been compounded by the huge outstanding terminal benefits for former employees, some of who left as far back as 2010 as well as the loan which was contracted from a local commercial bank for the purchase of a printing machine.
Mr. Muyanwa notes that on the issue of Zambia Daily Mail, the board should expeditiously recruit the new chief executive officer saying the current situation has been retrogressive adding that Daily Mail has operated without Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for more than a month now following the termination of the contract for the immediate past position holder.
He says notwithstanding the fact that there has been an acting managing director, they feel the absence of the substantive CEO has impacted negatively on the operations of the important organisation pointing out that there are some decisions which an acting CEO cannot make because of their sensitivity long-lasting implications, resulting in procrastination by the headless management.
Mr Muyanwa has further cited this year’s Collective Bargaining process between the Management at the institution and ZUJ as one such exercise which suffered that fate.