By Najibu Mulema
WBS TV is one of the oldest television stations in Uganda with tycoon Gordon Wavamuno as its proprietor and in early 2000s, the station was the best broadcasting station the country.
If by that time you talked about exciting TV stations and you didn’t talk about WBS, it was like you didn’t own a television set at your home.
Things started to become tough for the Naguru based station when new stations like NTV, NBS TV hit the market. It tried cope up with the new broadcasting trends but the last stroke which broke its back is the shs seven billion tax debt it failed to pay to Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).
Yesterday, the station management officially came out to announce its exit from operation as a public broadcaster effective today 14 December,2016.
According to Kabiito Karamagi, the stations’ manager, WBS Limited was placed under receivership by URA to recover over shs seven billion in unpaid taxes. It had been hoped initially that the company would be revamped through the employment of various turn around strategies that would restore the company to solvency and recover all the taxes due.
Unfortunately, this option proved unviable on account of lack of capital to meet urgent needs necessary for the preferred turnaround strategies. As a result the option available was to sell the company’s assets to realize the money due.
Watchdog was the first media platform to break the news that the receiver (URA) was looking for a buyer. The first person to be contacted was Kin Kaliisa of NBS TV but declined the offer and after a few days, the Zimbabwean businessman, Strive Masiyiwa expressed interest thus buying the struggling station.
Masiyiwa is the owner of a regional station known as Kwese TV that offers sports programs and WBS is going to start operating under the station.
The transaction was approved and consented by various government agencies including Uganda Communication Commission and Uganda Broadcasting Corporation.
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