NTV Journalists Smile to the Bank After New Salary Directive

  • The Nation Centre building in Nairobi's Kimathi Street where the Nation Media Group offices are located. Monday, October 21, 2019
    The Nation Centre building in Nairobi's Kimathi Street where the Nation Media Group offices are located.
    Simon Kiragu
  • The Nation Media Group (NMG), which owns popular media brands including Nation and NTV, has issued a new directive on staff salaries, nearly one year after it slashed salaries owing to the economic recess aligned with the Covid-19 pandemic. 

    In a statement released on Tuesday, March 30, Group Executive Director Stephen Gitagama announced the reinstatement of full pay for all staff effective March 2021.

    NMG’s June 2020 salary cuts ranged from 5 to 35 percent all dependant on gross earnings. It temporarily reduced the gross pay for all staff earning Ksh50,000 and above. 

    NTV studios
    NTV studios

    "The reinstatement is a recognition and appreciation of our collective sacrifice, hard work and commitment during the pandemic. Let me take this opportunity on behalf of the Board and management to thank each one of you for your dedication and patience during these unprecedented times," Gitagama said. 

    He noted that NMG faced a turbulent moment at the onset of the pandemic, as they were forced to opt for temporary salary reduction for employees to keep the media house afloat.

    Gitagama, however, warned that NMG may revert to pay cuts and other unfavourable measures if the pandemic worsened. 

    In December 2020 NMG revised the salaries upwards. Staff who were on a salary reduction ranging from 5% to 10 percent, were fully paid while those ranging from 15% to 35% got a relief of 10 percent.

    Royal Media Services (RMS) also announced reduced pay cuts up to 10 percent for all employees, effective March 1, 2021. RMS, which owns Citizen TV, had directed compulsory salary reduction of between 20 and 30 percent in March 2020. 

    "This means that staff currently on a salary reduction of 20% will go to 10% and the staff on 30% will go to 20%. We will continue to review the situation with a view to reverting to full salary for all staff as soon as possible," reads an excerpt of the statement," Wachira Waruru, the Group Managing Editor announced on March 25. 

    Insiders at Standard Media Group’s KTN News, however, disclosed that their salaries were still being subjected under a 19 percent pay cut and had not been notified of any changes ever since. 

    The media industry was one of the most affected in 2020, with houses such as Mediamax Network Limited (owning K24 TV) resorting to retrenching nearly its entire staff and rehiring afresh. The old employees had rejected compulsory pay cuts. 

    Citizen TV studios