Media Express Institutional profile

Media Express Institutional profile

Date: June 27, 2013
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Whoever has the ability to write, writes – GM, Media Express

Tucked into the second floor apartment on Bibi Titi Mohamed Road in bustling Posta – the central business district of Dar es Salaam – is Media Express, one of Gender Link’s Media Centres of Excellence. Sitting behind the desk in the office of the Chief Executive Officer is friendly and amiable, Lulu Malima. She quickly admits that she is new to the job and requires some assistance from the General Manager, Stewart Kasambala.

While waiting for Kasambala, Malima multitasks: attending to members of staff, going through the latest circulation and financial figures, and typing on her laptop while also taking care of her son, who feels very much at home as he moves in out and out of her office at will. Finally, the General Manager arrives and the interview commences.

Taking a broad overview, the two principal officers expressed delight at the progress they have made so far in mainstreaming gender into their operations, even though a lot is still required. The media house, according to Kamsambala, has a gender policy and sexual harassment policy, with more women than men on the organization’s board. But in the various departments – editorial, marketing etc, males dominate for now.

Kasambala was of the view that women do hold key positions, and are thus in a position to influence content: “There is a good balance, because we have two energetic female writers, and we have enough space. Our proof reader, who is also the subeditor is also a woman. She is really strong on gender issues; she really pushes the males to write on female issues so there is a good balance there.”

The media house also scrutinizes advertisements to ensure that sexist ads are not featured, “we have a gate keeper here and she is really on top of it,” said Kasambala. Kasambala also insists that no beats are the exclusive preserve of male or female reporters. “Our policy here is that whoever has the ability to write, you write”, he said.


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