Luapula radio in financial blues
Nchelenge, August 1, 2014, ZANIS…Luapula Community Radio Station in Nchelenge district is facing serious financial problems with workers going without salaries for two months.
ZANIS reports that the Board of management at the Radio station has confirmed the development adding that the media house is only able to pay for utility bills due to financial constraints.
Board Chairperson Boniface Kabosha in an interview with ZANIS today said the radio station is struggling to meet the monthly wage bill of K,9000 for contractual workers.
Mr. Kabosha disclosed that all the contractual workers at the community radio station have not been paid their salaries for two months and that the wage bill now stands at slightly over K18, 000 in arrears.
“We are unable to pay salaries to the workers timely apart from paying utility bills to the Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) and the Luapula Water and Sewerage Company (LWSCO),” Mr. Kabosha said.
He said his team is doing everything possible to dismantle the wage bill and ensure a steady flow of income to sustainably enhance the operations at the community radio station.
He further said the board and management at the media institution have devised strategies aimed at image building to make it commercially viable.
Mr Kabosha disclosed that new board members from both the government and private sector have been co-opted to help bring new business ideas.
He said he was optimistic that the co-opting of other people on the board will improve public confidence in the local media house that will subsequently improve its financial position.
Mr. Kabosha appealed to the government and private institutions to give the radio station business through adverts to raise income and stimulate its operations.
Meanwhile Mr. Kabosha refuted claims from some sections of the local community suggesting that some workers at the radio station have resigned because of the non-payment of salaries.
He said Emmanuel Chongo who served as an accountant resigned to concentrate on his studies while the radio station’s news editor Jeckt Mumba left for greener pastures.
The board chairperson said contrary to the speculations the local media house is operating at full scale because those that have left have since been replaced.
He revealed that the radio station has since re-engaged Dickson Chiyumbe as news editor and Samson Musonda Kalonde as senior reporter to enhance quality and efficiency.
And Luapula Community Radio Station manger Emmanuel Chibulu said the local media house is failing to meet its financial obligations towards workers salaries allegedly because of lack of government support.
Mr. Chibulu observed that most of the government departments in the area have not given the media house the much needed support through adverts for it to operate sustainably.
However, Mr. Chibulu praised the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL) for giving the radio station business .