Station in tender, nepotism row

THE management of the Ba-Phalaborwa Radio Station will have to explain to the board as to why the brother of the station's marketing manager Tshitshi Rikhotso was awarded tenders worth R21000, ahead of well-deserving companies.

The contract was for printing T-shirts, burners and brand mugs for the station in 2008 and last year.

The station management, the board and disgruntled staff members are expected to hold an urgent meeting today to discuss the matter .

The station received complaints from the public and presenters after it was rocked by allegations of nepotism, favouritism and tribalism.

Sowetan published an article last week highlighting some of the complaints by presenters who threatened to close the station down.

Soon after the publication, programmes manager Donald Shingange and Rikhotso were suspended by the station's board.

Shingange was suspended for allegedly working in cahoots with Rikhotso to award the tenders to her brother in what the board viewed as a move to defraud the station.

The suspensions were confirmed by board chairman Mercy Mohale.

Soon after the suspensions, Shingange handed in his resignation to the management last week.

Station manager Ernest Ngobeni admitted yesterday that the station was currently faced with problems linked to human relations, discipline and professionalism.

"We will appreciate any kind of assistance to make the station what it should be and continue to serve our people," he said.