Stephen Gitagama, CEO, Nation Media Group, Kenya
As a media company that operates in four countries, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, we are facing multiple challenges. The first and foremost challenge for us is to keep our staff safe and healthy.
We have some 10 Hazmut suits and some other personal protective equipment, which our reporters and TV crew are using in Kenya. We will be procuring more PPEs soon. Most of our staff, who are not required to go into the field, are working from home and organizing this was a logistical and technological challenge.
Besides this, coordinating with our publications and media outlets based in Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda has also taken up a lot of energy and time. We have to ensure that our colleagues in those countries are safe. The lockdown in countries are proving to be a major challenge for us. While there is complete lockdown in Rwanda since March 28, Uganda imposed it on March 31, Kenya and Tanzania have yet to decide about it.
The pandemic has impacted our business. The advertising revenue has gone down by almost 50 per cent and the circulation of newspapers has suffered a drop of 30 per cent. Despite this we have to keep the outlets operational, as in these times it is the duty of the media to provide authentic and correct information to the people.
I am confident that like all other crises in the past, we will overcome this too.