Bingu refused to renew Malopa's contract–OPC

Office of President and Cabinet say Nyasa Times correctly reported  on April 5 that fired chief executive of state-run Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC), Bright Malopa was sent on an indefinite leave on the issue of MBC–TVM merger.

When Malawi’s new president Joyce Banda ascended to the top job, the appointment of veteran broadcaster Benson Tembo to be MBC boss was announced by OPC.

OPC says Malopa was not sacked by President Banda but rather late president Bingu wa Mutharika “refused to renew Bright’s contract.”

According to OPC, Banda only “implemented that decision which was already in place.”

Malopa: Contract was terminated under Mutharika administration

Malopa who has no media background, as reported  earlier  irked late Mutharika for  ignoring all advices by OPC regarding the transition of the two tax-payers’ money funded media institutions, MBC Radios  and Television Malawi (TVM) into making them a single entity.

The OPC source confided in Nyasa Times that the committee had to seek presidential intervention on the matter and notified late president Mutharika of the decision to suspend Malopa from the organisation as his behaviour was becoming so unbecoming accusing him of being egotistical and pompous.

Late Mutharika ordered that his contract not be renewed.

But a source close to Malopa said he protested that his contract was expiring in June next year and was only sent to a leave.

Malopa was regarded as one of the political strategists for the Mutharika’s, the late president and his brother Peter. He led a vigorous campaign against Banda who at the time was vice president after she had refused to endorse the president’s brother as his successor.

The change of guard at MBC attracted comments from observers including Justin Dzodzi, a private lawyer who faulted – as it were reported – the manner in which the President terminated the services of the MBC head as well as the manner in which she appointed his replacement.

Dzodzi said the law mandates the board of MBC to do so, arguing that Banda’s decision “may be legally challenged by the affected party by way of judicial review process.”

He said “modern corporate governance rules on employment of senior public officers require open and competitive recruitment. This is also consistent with Malawi’s national procurement principles espoused by the Public Procurement Act.”

Dzodzi further argued that at the minimum, the board of directors should have advertised for the position and allowed qualified candidates to compete for the position.

But OPC headed by lawyer Bright Msaka says Malopa’s issue was handled by the previous administration of late Mutharika.

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