ZIMPAPERS has, with immediate effect, suspended the publication of five newspapers including B-Metro and Umthunywa as the country’s largest integrated media house goes into semi-lockdown in an effort to play its part in the prevention of the spread of coronavirus.
The company has sent most staff members on leave while a majority will be working from home to reduce human traffic at the company’s workstations.
Other publications that will not be produced are H-Metro, Kwayedza and Suburban — all based in Harare.
Zimpapers will remain with Chronicle, Sunday News, Herald, Sunday Mail and Manica Post in circulation.
The company has also scaled down operations at its commercial printing division, Natprint.
As a result, 53 percent employees have been sent on leave.
“In its contribution to the national effort to fight the spread of the coronavirus, Zimpapers has decided to go into a semi-lockdown and ask some of its employees to either work from home or proceed on leave. Critical staff will continue working from the main centres in Harare, Bulawayo, Mutare and Kariba as well as its bureaus spread across the country,” read a statement.
The company said it would be curtailing printing of some newspapers as countries where it imports newsprint, inks and plates have already gone on lockdown.
The publications that would remain in circulation will carry reports and educational messages on the virus in local languages to ensure that no one is left behind in the fight against Covid-19.
Zimpapers has also implemented similar measures on its four commercial radio stations Star FM and Capitalk in Harare, Nyaminyami in Kariba and Diamond FM in Mutare which will share content to decongest studios.
BoldAds, Zimpapers advertising arm’s employees will work from home while over 50 percent of the workforce at Zimbabwe Television Network (ZTN) has been asked to either work from home or take their leave days.