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CyBC chairman quits over budget

The chairman of state broadcaster CyBC has submitted his resignation saying he was unable to draft a budget that would be catastrophic for the organisation and see people lose their jobs.

In his resignation letter to the interior minister, Makis Symeou said it would be impossible for CyBC to continue to operate under its current structure — with the reduced state assistance for 2014 — if there was no restructuring or dismissal of a large number of staff.

Symeou said the draft budget prepared by the management as per the instructions of the interior minister, fell short by €5.5 million.

“And it is obvious that to cover this amount there must be many changes and dismissal of over 150 associates,” Symeou said.

The CyBC has seen huge budget cuts in the past four years and has now reached its limit, the chairman said.

“I cannot submit a budget that will be damaging and catastrophic for the organisation and will see a large number of dismissals,” the chairman said, adding that CyBC would disintegrate.

CyBC was not asking for more money or special treatment, Symeou said, but there must first be a study that will look into its restructuring.

“Only this would ensure the quality and prospects of the state broadcaster,” Symeou said.

The chairman said the times were tough and could become tougher, both as regards the economy, and the Cyprus problem.

“A weak and spineless state broadcaster will not be in a position to respond to the demands of our times,” Symeou said.

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