Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Dora Siliya says State enterprises should operate within their means despite the financial challenges they are facing because government is still experiencing austerity measures.

Speaking when she met ZNBC board members at her office in Lusaka, Thursday, Siliya argued that there was no excuse for State enterprises to operate beyond their means.

According to a statement released from the Ministry’s press and public relations unit, Siliya urged ZNBC board members to make tough decisions around the institution.

“Ms Siliya, urged ZNBC board members to make tough decisions around the institutions so that the investments made so far do not go to waste. The Minister said, despite the financial challenges some State enterprises were facing, there was need for them to operate within their means. Government in the last year has been very categorical in saying that State enterprises have no excuse for operating beyond their means. What we hope from State enterprises is that, if they can’t provide dividends to government, at least they can operate within their means because even we, as a Ministry and within government, are experiencing austerity. So, we all have to apply our minds and say, ‘what is the best way to work with the resources available?’ As the President said in Parliament last year, we need to do more with less and that should be our attitude,” read the statement

Siliya said government would ensure that the national broadcaster actualized the digital migration process in its totality.

“Ms Siliya said government is responsible and accountable to the public on all its expenditure and ZNBC plays an important role in making this information available to the public. ZNBC is the only media that represents Zambians with the seven languages and is also the media that is in the last mile, especially with our digital migration and the village TV programme. Ms Siliya said it’s government’s desire to see ZNBC cover events, not only in Lusaka, but every district across the nation. She said government will ensure that the national broadcaster actualizes the digital migration process in its totality,” read the statement.

And Siliya stressed that it was important for traditional media in the age of fake news to keep standards, saying they were reference points of credible information.

“Ms Siliya said it is important for ZNBC to be on top of things in the wake of the Internet, which has provided easier and cheaper ways to produce and provide content. She said change happens every day and nothing in business remains the same, hence the need for ZNBC to face the new challenges of the Internet because citizens, now, have multiple sources of content. Ms Siliya said that it is important for traditional media in this age of fake news to keep the standards as they are the reference point of excellence and credible information,” stated Siliya.

Meanwhile, ZNBC acting board chairperson Juliana Mwila expressed gratitude over government’s commitment to ensuring that ZNBC succeeded and set a standard in the media industry.

“We are glad that government has heavily invested in digital migration and we will do our best to actualize it and see to it that the institution remains in the lead in as far as the broadcasting industry is concerned,” stated Mwila.