NBC in strife

Main Stories, National

The National, Wednesday 24th of September, 2014

 National Broadcasting Corporation managing director Memafu Kapera says it is “business as usual” at the State-owned entity despite moves by the board to remove him.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had to personally intervene on Monday in the row between management and the board, sending his deputy chief of staff Oscar Yamuna to assure NBC staff that Kapera was still managing director.

Kapera told reporters at the corporation’s 5-Mile headquarters yesterday that the management had been having “situations” with the board but it “will move forward in the best interest of the organisation”.

Board chairman, Timothy Tala could not comment yesterday. He is understood to be awaiting the arrival of Minister for Communication and Information Technology Jimmy Miringtoro from Bougainville today to officially announce some board decisions.

Miringtoro and Tala last month had made public statements about the need to overhaul the organisation to lift its performance level.

Kapera yesterday met staff and later told reporters that it was business as usual.

“We (management) have had situations with the board,” he said.

“At the end of the day, it’s about understanding the demarcation of responsibilities – of the board and the management.

“The (Broadcasting) Act clearly states that the management runs the operations of the organisation, and the board looks at the big picture, the strategic direction of the organisation, and the policies of the organisation. 

“That’s where our relationship stops.

“The board is speaking about removing management. We are not aware of it.”

He said the management wanted to work together with the board.

“The management is cleaning up the mess, and we expect the board to assist us to turn the organisation around,” he said.

“There’s no time for politics, individuals. 

“It’s about the organisation, first and foremost. So that’s where we are.”

Kapera said Tala had only been in office for five weeks and any decision to remove him as the managing director would have to come from Cabinet.

Tala said recently that one of his main tasks was to ensure that the NBC had a proper business plan and structure for its progress.

“We have a vision for NBC, we want see it grow because by 2017 we should be fading from analogue to digital,” he said. 

“We have been left behind, in information people are running, NBC has been walking and half of the time they are sleeping.”