New Age defends Telkom’s R34m for ads

Johannesburg - The New Age CEO Nazeem Howa hit back on Monday morning at a weekend newspaper report that the state-owned Telkom was its top advertiser.

“It's similar to the patronising and racist mindset of some of opposition politicians who imply that the senior executives like Pinky Moholi at Telkom, Brian Molefe at Transnet, Brian Dames at Eskom and others who run parastatals don't know what they are doing and do not apply their minds when they spend their budgets,” Howa was quoted as saying.

The New Age CEO Nazeem Howa. File picture: Jennifer Bruce. Credit: INLSA

“By implication, City Press is saying these CEOs and their management teams are incompetent and corrupt.

“In my view, City Press's story is part of an ongoing and sustained narrative that says since black people (read the ANC) have taken over the running of our government, major corporations and parastatals, those involved are inherently corrupt,” Howa said in a report in The New Age.

He was responding to a report in the City Press on Sunday that Telkom invested R34 million in advertising in The New Age newspaper from December 2011 to November 2012.

The most recent Nielsen Adex report revealed that Telkom, which is 40 percent owned by the government, was the top advertiser in The New Age during the period, according to the City Press.

It was responsible for a third of the newspaper's advertising revenue.

It was previously reported that Telkom sponsored 12 business breakfasts for The New Age to the tune of R12 million in the 2012/13 financial year, according to the newspaper. - Sapa