Information Permanent Secretary Chanda Kasolo says both public and private companies which cannot afford to pay workers salaries must halt operations.
And Kasolo says ZNBC does not cover the opposition for fear of the unknown.
Speaking when he featured on Radio Phoenix’ Let the People Talk, Friday, Kasolo said all businesses that could not pay employees a minimum wage must close down.
“There are certain institutions that haven’t been paid for eight months or so but that is not necessarily true. Some people may not have had their benefits paid for eight months because they are not working for the organization but the salaries may have not been paid for two-three months. And that’s not right of course. Everybody deserves the right to be paid immediately for the services that they have given but both organizations that have been mentioned (Times of Zambia and Postal services) are not be 100% permanent. They are semi-independent government organizations and action is being taken. For example Times of Zambia and Zambia Daily Mail are now under the IDC which holds all semi-government organizations or parastatals. So the issue is being addressed,” Kasolo said.
“But the fact that people are not getting paid should not justify them being on lower salaries…If that business can’t cope to pay a living wage which is a minimum wage, then they must pose and that includes state organizations.”
And Kasolo said ZNBC did not cover the opposition for fear of the unknown.
“I am not aware if KBF was covered or not covered. I would have hoped that he would have been covered. Maybe the timing is a factor. You know when two big stories come up on the same day it’s unfortunate. It’s better they come on different dates. Now if he wasn’t covered then I am sorry that whatever happened, ZNBC should have not missed that issue. It should have covered it. It’s very important [but] I think that times and Daily Mail covered that. Of course ZANIS are not in that sort of news, so they are exempted. But for me, private media also choose who they want to cover and private media does not cover the government of the day enough so the government of the day complains,” said Kasolo.
“I don’t give instructions and I don’t get instructions. They operate independently but the problem is they fear of the unknown. They fear that if they cover the opposition too much [then] they will be disciplined. That’s a fear from the past. I think this is a very big difference compared to governments before. You find that they allow. Even President Edgar Chagwa Lungu was saying ‘why are you covering me only? ‘why don’t you cover the opposition to say their side of the story?’ let them say what they want to say that ‘are we going to eat roads?’ let the journalists ask questions which the general public would like to ask those people and this is not allowing the opposition to come and start insulting the government no. That we will not allow.”