In a surprising development, ace sportscaster Shola Ayegbajeje has revealed what he termed ‘Vintage FM’s dire financial situation after been relieved of his role at the radio station.
Speaking with Primus Media, Ayegbajeje claims the radio station owes him two months’ salary for September and October and that he was abruptly asked to resign last Tuesday due to insufficient funds.
Expressing his frustration, Ayegbajeje mentioned to Primus Media how distressing it was to receive a termination letter when he expected the management to address the outstanding salary issues.
Mr. Ayegbajeje explained further that he was almost tempted to become violent, but thanks to the timely intervention of Barrister Rotimi Ali and the Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Oyo state Chapter, Comr. Ademola Babalola, who urged him not to take that route. He revealed to the Primus Media crew that his lawyer advised him to contact the NUJ Chairman, who consequently urged him to remain calm as the unfortunate incident unfolded.
In response to these allegations, Vintage 93.7FM’s General Manager, Ronke Giwa-Onafuwa, gave a different account of the story. Contrary to Mr. Ayegbajeje’s claims, Ronny G, as she is fondly called, stated that the decision for him to resign was not abrupt.
According to her, the station’s management had a discussion with Ayegbajeje a month before the alleged forced resignation about the impact of the economy on the business. She expressed concerns about the financial challenges faced by the station and suggested the possibility of converting him to a freelance presenter or having him resign.
During the meeting, she expressed her dissatisfaction with Ayegbajeje’s performance, citing his lack of collaboration with other team members and his refusal to follow instructions from the Head of Programmes or the General Manager, insisting he could only report to the Managing Director. She also stated that Ayegbajeje acknowledged his shortcomings and pledged to improve but later received a query for insubordination when he did not yield.
Mrs. Giwa-Onafuwa asserted that on Tuesday, November 14th, Ayegbajeje was given an opportunity to resign, which he reportedly declined. However, he was paid his outstanding salary later that same day.
“Mr Ayegbajeje was not sacked abruptly. The management of Vintage93.7FM had a discussion with him a month earlier about how the economy has impacted businesses in recent times and that he may have to convert to freelance or even asked to resign;
“Mr Ayegabajeje was specifically called by the General Manager to discuss the impact of the economy on the station’s finances. During their discussion, she informed him that the station would rather downsize than to owe salaries.
“She also shared her dissatisfaction with his performance and his inability to be a team player; He often refused to take instructions from the head of programmes and insisted that he would only report to the MD.
“He agreed that he had not been pulling his weight as he ought to and promised to do better. Shortly after this conversation he was still given a query for insubordination.
“On Tuesday 14th November, He was then given an opportunity to resign which he refused. He was also paid his salary later the same day.” She said.