Kenya’s Economy is on downturn, says DP Ruto’s owned Mediamax Limited

How bad is Kenya’s economy? Given lack of public outrage, no significant rise in food prices, availability of stable foods even when the rains failed terribly this year, and a rather stable shilling to the dollar since 2015, it is rather hard to answer this question. Hard to answer because over the same period, several companies have laid off workers to the hundreds, others closed shop, citing harsh economic times, and hardly no small scale business man or woman cites business growth and prosperity. The massive borrowing by the government hasn’t helped either. But when a Deputy President owned company Mediamax Limited issues layoff notice citing poor economic performance, one is somehow forced to conclude that indeed the economy’s trajectory is downhill.

A memo circulating on social media by Mediamax limited, a Uhuru Kenyatta’s Family and William Ruto’s owned Media House, gave a notice to the company’s employees that a number of them will be laid off. The memo actually read like this,

“Mediamax Network Limited regrets to advise; that owing to the recent economic downturn and los of its major revenue streams, it shall reorganize its staff structure and abolish some positions as part of its cost cutting measures.

“In view of the above, the services of some of its employees will be rendered superfluous thereby necessitating the termination of their employment on account of redundancy.

“In accordance with the provisions of Section 40 of the Employment Act, No. 11 of 2007, Mediamax Network Limited hereby gives one (1) month’s notice of the intended redundancies.

“In line with its current HR Policies, Mediamax Network Limited shall give the employees declared redundant one (1) month’s notice or, alternatively, pay one (1) month’s salary in lieu of notice and pay a severance at the rate of 15 (25) days pay for each year of service. Further the affected employees will be paid their salary for the period up to and including the date of termination and all accruing benefits, including any leave days earned but not taken.”

The memo, signed by Ken Ngaruiya, Ag. CEO, clearly shows how Mediamax believes the economy is not performing optimally.  The poor performance of the economy particularly in the media industry can be attributed to the decision by the government to implement cost cutting measures, and the biggest expenditure reduction is the expenditure on advertisements.

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The other biggest source of revenue for the media industry has been the betting firms, the biggest of which closed shop late last week, after the government took them in circles over tax compliance.

Despite these indicators of a poor performing economy, Kenyans can still be hopeful that things can get better. That is, as long as the Government ensures inflation doesn’t rise due to increased food prices, fuel, or that the general cost of living remains relatively stable, and the shilling doesn’t fly up against the dollar, then Kenyans can still be made to remain calm.

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Odipo Riaga
Managing Editor at KachTech Media
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