Former head of the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) Mzwanele Manyi says The New Age (TNA) newspaper and its sister news channel ANN7 were “punished” for reporting on “white collar corporate capture”.
Manyi bought TNA and ANN7 from the Gupta family in 2017. The media companies went under about a year later.
Appearing before the state capture commission of inquiry on Monday, Manyi said the media units were “punished” by the private sector – whose role players “hunt like a pack” – because they offered an alternative voice to the mainstream media.
‘Job losses a tragedy’
Manyi said it was a “tragedy” that about 500 people lost their jobs when TNA and ANN7 closed. He said that when he took over the media units in 2017, he came into a loss-making organisation. He said it was “already bleeding, something like R5m per month”.
Manyi said his “biggest preoccupation was to save jobs”.
“I thought if I replace the Guptas there, I can save those jobs. But it was not to be. Five hundred people are without a job for something that could have been prevented. It was a tragedy to have lost that business,” he said.
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Manyi also blamed the…