Broke Times Group! Reporters Yet To Get October Salaries, Opt To Blackmailing Govt, DPP Officials For Survival
Despite engaging in a fully-fledged war against government coupled with threats to give a blackout to the President and his cabinet, Times Group is sailing through financial woes to the point of failing to pay its journalists and other staff on time, we can reveal.
Sources at the institution say employees are yet to receive their October salaries due to financial imprudence being exercised by CEO, Leonard Chikadya and Managing Director George Kasakula.
The delay in paying its journalists has forced them to be extorting money from news sources for survival.
“We are working hard to dig stories that involve big personalities with the sole reason of asking them for money to suppress publication of the same. How else can we survive in light of this financial breakdown,” wrote one senior journalist in a message.
Journalists at Times Group are forced to tow the editorial line of supporting Malawi Congress Party’s agenda together with that of party leader Lazarus Chakwera.
The media conglomerate – which owns Daily Times, Malawi News and Sunday Times, Times Radio and TV – is among a few institutions that are contemplating on stopping giving coverage to President Mutharika as his cabinet.
Ironically, Times Group and its cronies rely heavily on government advertising for survival on top of having huge accumulated debts and arrears with money lending institutions and revenue authorities respectively.
Experts warn of a crisis on the part of the media if they so choose to stop giving coverage to the Head of State and his cabinet.
“It doesn’t add up at all because their existence relies on the Presidency itself and government policy. This might be the very reason why they abuse this privilege and end up sensationalizing stories that involve the First Citizen. If they choose to stop then it will be a financial disaster on their part unless they decide to offer free copies,” noted one financial expert in Lilongwe.
At a government function recently President Mutharika advised the media to be professional in executing their duties, a sentiment that seemed to have not gone down well with these aggrieved media houses.