Mmegi Online :: MISA vows to re-open regional office
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Last Updated
Wednesday 28 June 2017, 06:00 am.
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MISA vows to re-open regional office

After it was forced to close its regional office last year October, due to financial constraints, the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) vows to bounce back in 2018.
By Pini Bothoko Thu 30 Mar 2017, 16:37 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: MISA vows to re-open regional office








The chairperson of MISA Trust Board of Trustees, Luckson Chipare revealed intentions to re-open the office in an interview with Mmegi on the sidelines of the two-day consultative workshop on partner collaboration between the media and training institutions that ended yesterday in Gaborone.

Chipare disclosed that one of their major donors pulled out last September leaving them in limbo.

“Prior to the closure of the office, we were operating with little funds and when our major donor who was providing funding for administration decided to pull out, we had no choice but to close the office,” Chipare said.

He stated that they were also faced with debts that were standing at $14,000, but efforts are in place to raise money to settle the debts.

“So far we have raised US$5,000 to pay our debts and still working on other ways to raise funds to clear the debt. We are hopeful that before the end of the year, we will have paid it all,” Chipare said pleading for support towards the re-opening of the office.

He said around 20 employees were laid off during the closure of the office, but hopes that the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) may come to their rescue.

“We have been asked to send proposals to OSISA, but we cannot do so because we are still faced with debts. We have to clear out our debts before we can approach OSISA as they cannot fund us to pay debts,” Chipare said.

Chipare stated that despite closing down the

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office, they are currently doing regional administration work for MISA and in return, MISA will give them an administration fee that they will use to pay their debts with.

Asked on the closure of MISA regional office, MISA Botswana chapter chairperson, Modise Maphanyane said the closure of the regional office also had a negative impact on MISA Botswana because they were depending on it for funding.

Maphanyane stated that MISA regional office’s financial constraints started back in 2000 and ever since 2012, MISA Botswana has not received any funding from them.

“We have been surviving with baskets funding from them, so their closure affected us as well because we depended on them for funding. We (MISA Botswana) were also forced to close office due to financial constraints,” Maphanyane said.

He slammed the Government for failing to support the media and viewing them as an enemy.

“Government cannot fund us because they view us as opposition towards them, something which is not true. I have also questioned media houses on their political affiliations to clear off the perception,” Maphanyane said.

He raised a concern that organisations are struggling without funds because donors are pouring money into the President’s Housing Appeal. OSISA’s programme officer for democracy and governance, Lusako Munyenyembe said OSISA is flexible on funding and encouraged media organisations to send them funding proposals.

Munyenyembe says that they are phasing out projects that have been there for years to look for new ideas, but the problem is, some organisations like MISA have collapsed.

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