Malawi’s leading media group Blantyre Printing and Publishing (Times Group) Chief Executive Leonard Chikadya on Monday cancelled a K100, 000 cheque; a contribution towards an initiative to raise funds for one of its fired editors Limbani Moya who is battling with chronic kidney failure disease and needs a kidney transplant in India.
An accountant at the group told Nyasa Times that Chikadya was annoyed with a an industrial dispute summons served on Times Group for unfair dismissal by a re-known lawyer Lusungu Gondwe of Ritz Attorneys law firm which is representing Moya, according to Industrial Relations Court documents case file number IRC 449 of 2014.
“Some Times Group editors were in a committee of Friends of Limbani who are helping to raise K15 million for the kidney transplant. BP&P had drawn a K100 000 cheque, as its contribution. But before the cheque was presented to the committee chaired by MISA Malawi president Anthony Kasunda, summons, were served on the BP&P which angered the MD. He immediately ordered cancellation of the cheque and threatened editors to withdraw from the committee,” said the accountant.
Chikadya also banned coverage of any of the fundraising activities, including the teeing-off of a charity golf function to be graced by the country’s vice president Saulos Chilima on Friday, in any of the media house publications including Times Television, according to the accountant.
Lawyer and Company Secretary for Blantyre Print, Innocent Kalua confirmed having been served with the summons, but declined to comment on a matter which was in court.
Ironically, Limbani Moya was personally fired by Chikadya at a time when he was critically sick after returning from a South African Hospital.
He was fired along Daily Times Editor Daniel Nyirenda, Jack MacBrams ( Entertainment Editor) Andrew Mfune (Auditor), Harrison Longwe( Business Development Manager) and Allan Nyallo (Circulation Manager), who are all also suing the media house for unfair dismissal.
Chikadya, who is currently attending a month long Broadcasting seminar in Holland, refused to comment, but he is well known for firing journalists willy-nilly since he became Chief Executive Officer at the late Dr. Kamuzu Banda’s media empire.
He has also sent on forced leave his right hand man Dr. Tikhala Chibwana after falling out over editorial policies.
Meanwhile, a member of the Friends of Limbani Committee confirmed that Nyasa Times editorial director Thom Twee Chiumia has made a K150 000 cash donation of which K50 000 will go towards the cost of Limbani’s Dialysis treatment at Mwaiwathu Hospital.
Moya was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2012 and has been receiving treatment at various hospitals in Malawi and South Africa. The medical bill is about K15 million (US$36 407.8).
The initiative has raised so far K4 million from among others from Mike Mlombwa’s Countrywide Car Hire has donated K1 million (US$2 427), K200, 000 from Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :