Shamu threaten to sack ZBC managers

jailbirdsHARARE Zimbabwes Information Ministry has threatened to fire senior managers at the countrys sole broadcaster after they failed to screen the official opening of the mining investment conference by President Robert Mugabe during the main news bulletin last Wednesday.

Sources at the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporations (ZBC) Pockets Hill studios told ZimOnline last week that Information Minister Webster Shamu, and his permanent secretary George Charamba last Thursday stormed the studios and read the riot act to about 10 managers charged with delivering the 8pm news after they allegedly botched proceedings on Wednesday night.

The state-owned ZBC also known as Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings (ZBH), which runs Zimbabwes only television and radio stations failed to screen Mugabes key note address due to technical hitches blamed on faulty equipment.

The footage, which later appeared well after 9pm, had no sound.

Shamu and Charamba stormed into Pockets Hill and summoned managers after the Wednesday debacle, said one of the managers who attended the meeting.

Insiders said some of the managers taken to task by Shamu and Charamba included chief executive officer Happison Muchechetere, Tarzzen Mandizvidza, Freedom Moyo (bulletin manager), Jacob Phiri, Brian Rwafa (responsible for reporters) and five other senior managers responsible for editing.

The problem is not with us but the equipment. Judith Makwanya brought the tape with the presidential story around 7pm but we could not slot it in immediately due to problems with the editing equipment. When we finally slotted it in after 9pm, there was no sound, said another ZBC source.

We were told that Mugabe is the President of this country and should be the top story whether we liked it or not. Charamba went on to say those who did not like were free to leave ZBC, the manager added

Shamu, in a brief conversation, confirmed that he went to the ZBC with Charamba but said, it was a routine visit as we are familiarising ourselves with the surroundings.

Charamba was not immediately available for comment on the matter.

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