A number of workers were sent on Forced leave with a pay of 500,000 Shillings a month, to sustain them during this period. Several others were terminated in a decision, which according to the company’s Chief Executive Robert Kabushenga, was in response to the changed media industry circumstances.
Parliament’s Finance committee
will start a probe into Vision Group’s recent decision to close three of its
regional newspapers and examine the lay-offs which affected hundreds of their staff.
The media conglomerate runs more than 10 media
units comprising Newspapers, magazines and broadcast channels namely; New Vision, Bukedde paper and Bukedde Radio, Orumuri, Etop Newspaper
and Etop FM, Urban TV, XFM, TV West, Kampala Sun, Rupiny Newspaper and Rupiny FM, among
others. The entity in which
the government holds a 53.3 per cent shareholding, employs 691 People.
However, Vision Group, incorporated as the New
Vision Printing and Publishing Company Limited, announced salary cuts by up to 60 per cent, less
than two months after the government announced a lockdown to contain the possible
spread of coronavirus Disease- COVID-19. During the same time, the company opted
to close three of its regional newspapers.
A number of workers were sent on Forced leave with
a pay of 500,000 Shillings
a month, to sustain
them during this period. Several
others were terminated in a decision, which according to the company’s Chief
Executive Robert Kabushenga, was in response to the changed media industry
circumstances. The most affected departments include editorial and sales.
Amid the tension and uncertainty, the
employees petitioned the government
for an intervention to save the corporation and the industry from descending into
an abyss. Today Ngora County
MP David Abala presented before
parliament, a petition by affected workers from Teso, a motion which was amended by Lilly Adong, the Nwoya Woman MP to
include the other regional newspapers.
Abala told the house that the
closure of Etop has made several people jobless but also created a huge
information gap in Teso
//Cue in; “Parliament investigates the…
Cue out…them in number.”//
Lilly Adong said that although the government is making most
of its communication through the media, Vision Group which owns most of the
media companies and also employs hundreds is laying off staff. She says the newspapers in the region are at the centre of
//Cue in; “Madam Speaker…
Cue out…of these media.”//
Dokolo Woman MP Cecilia Ogwal says it is disturbing to see a government
media house laying off
//Cue in; “Right Honorable Speaker…
Cue out…on the matter.”//
The Speaker of Parliament Rebecca
Kadaga has sent the matter to the
finance committee which she
tasked to seek answers from the government on why people are being laid off from
their jobs yet the government
itself got chunks of
money to stimulate the economy.
//Cue in; “Honourable members
Cue out…this newspapers.”//
The Probe into what is happening
at Vision Group starts next week. New
Vision Printing and Publishing Company Limited is listed on the Uganda stock exchange
with an expected turnover of over 90.2