By Duncan Mlanjira
Following a public notice that announced that the Times Group and Brian Banda have parted company, people went on social media to lament this development, saying they shall miss this award-winning Times Radio and Times TV host.
The public notice from the Times Group says Brian voluntarily resigned on personal grounds despite reports that are circulating on social media that he has been forced to resign following accusation of professional misconduct.
“Management is aware that there are some listeners and viewers of both Times Radio and Times Television who miss services of Brian Banda as host on both media platforms.
“Management assures the listeners and viewers that arrangements are underway to identify and replace Brian Banda with new talent in keeping with the ethical behaviour and operating standards of Times Group as the leading media House in Malawi.
“Any inconvenience caused during this transition period is regrettable,” said the statement, which in one way has added room for people to still speculate that Brian may have been forced to resign.
Writing on Facebook, Dannie Grant Phiri said Times Group shouldn’t have brought up the ethics issue at all.
“Otherwise it would appear they’re playing to a certain gallery,” Phiri said, agreeing with Chimwemwe Kamanga, who had said it encapsulates the personal grounds of his resignation.
Hope Mezuwa said: “In other words, Brian Banda was short of ethical behaviour and could not adhere to BNL operational standards. What a communication to the public!!”
Levi Mac Chirwa believes ethical behaviour could be twofold regarding work place that that one could be relate to what the job demands of the worker to maintain at all times and the standard of performance that uphold the company’s integrity.
“The other could relate to the worker’s personal disposition, behavior, conduct outside work place that would maintain or compromise the company’s integrity.
“The worker must be mindful that the public is watching you and any mistake can adversely affect the employer. It’s not clear what was Brian’s shortfall,” he said.
On his post, Deguzman Adzigude Kaminjolo said: “There is only one him. Never has been another, never will there be another.
“Honest assesment of an authentic radio or TV maestro starts and ends at Brian Banda. He is what Du Chisiza was to drama; what John Nyanga was to comedy and what Lucius Chiccio Banda is to music.
“Thirty years to come Malawi will still be searching for an equal replacement of such talent. The side celebrating his departure at Times is the side that feels relieved by his absence.
“My advise to Brian Banda is start your own production company, develop content and sell to the private media houses — you are now too big to be an employee of any organisation.”
To which Mac Tembo responded that people start their own businesses because they are ready.
“You were not forced to resign at Times because of unethical behavior, you left because you thought you had what it takes to do own things.
“The Times Group statement is more damaging to Brian’s reputation and it will be a reference to his potential customers,” Tembo said.
Dawn Gowa Nyasulu asked Deguzman to consider partnering with Brian to build the best of two giants.
Louis Uko and Henzema Henzema agreed with Deguzman’s advice to Brian to start his own production company.
“Just like Gospel Kadzako, he started small with Tiakalulu media house and gradually increased,” Henzema said.
Kangel Malunga said: “‘Too big to be an employee’ I quote — painful truth.”
Madalitso Kateta said he is already missing Brian and suggested that the best Times Group could do was to have another settlement where Brian could mentor his replacement.
Brian, who became a household name as host of Capital FM Straight Talk interview programme, has on many times agitated some politicians through Times TV’s talk show ‘Hot Current’ which he hosted together with George Kasakula.
Before joining the Times Group, Brian worked as State House press officer for former President Joyce Banda.