Mediamax Networks Limited is once again trending for the wrong reasons, earlier today nearly one hundred employees of the corporate media house affiliated with the Kenyatta family took to the streets of the social media to voice their discontentment with the corporation’s Chief Executive Officer Ken Ngaruiya who was unavailable to comment on the growing concerns at Mediamax Networks Limited. The chaos started sometimes last year when the CEO is said to have unilaterally and without any consultations retrenched several of K24 staff members. At the time, the disgruntled took no action as it seemed as a legitimate cost cutting measure to rescue K24 from its financial quagmire.
In the last seven months however, the trend has continued and so have the troubles of mediamax Networks Limited employees. On 10th June, 2020 the employment and labour relations court reinstated some ten employees who had been unceremoniously been dismissed for moving to court to challenge Ken Ngaruiya’s blatant disobedience of court orders. Surprisingly, on 19th June, 2020, 19 days into the month, and nine after Him Byram’s decree, issued a memo enforcing a 50% paycut to be applied to all Mediamax Networks Limited employees except himself. As if that was not enough, he purported to retain salaries of some four employees of K24 and sent another five on indefinate unpaid leave.
The disgruntled have now taken to the president of Kenya Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta and written to him demanding his intervention. In their letter, the employees are asking that the unilateral decisions by the acting Chief Executive Officer Ken Ngaruiya be reviewed and that he be compelled to honour court order that was issued on the 10th of June. Since his appointment as CEO, the employees is Mediamax Networks Limited and specifically have expressed concerns over how Mr. Ngaruiya is running the organisation and many of them have since left Mediamax Networks Limited. It is unclear whether they too were dismissed but all indications support that narrative.
It is unclear whether the president will in effect enforce the court order seeing as his own government is currently involved in a power struggle with the judiciary over similar allegations of disregard to court orders. The court order directs that another memo dated backdated to 1st April, 2020 but posted on the 19 is null and void and that the employees that were dismissed employees be returned to their posts unconditionally. The order also required that CEO and the disgruntled employees have a productive discourse and agree on the terms of salary cuts. In their letter to the president the employees are asking the president to look into the affairs of Mediamax which belongs to the Kenyatta family. It is unclear whether an intervention is due because Ngaruiya has stated that he is untouchable and that whomever is disgruntled is free to leave. It is that belligerent arrogance that has put Mediamax in the kneelock that might just be the end of Mediamax Networks as we know it.