News portal The Rakyat Post reportedly ceased operations today, as confirmed by The Rakyat Post themselves.
According to The Star Online, the company told its staff of the decision to cease operations at a meeting with several representatives of its 60 employees. The employees were also told that they would have to lodge a complaint with the Labour Department or seek industrial action in order to get their 2 months’ unpaid salaries.
Around 15 employers had showed up to seek guidance from the Labour Department office in Subang Jaya, on the steps required to lodge a formal complaint against the company, The Star Online reports.
The Rakyat Post representative Michael Murty told The Star Online that in December, the employers indicated that there was a problem with funding. After which, in January, The Rakyat Post employees got their December salaries one or two days later than usual. Another employee said that most reporters had been working from home since the middle of January.
For now, The Rakyat Post is still accessible, although it doesn’t look like there has been new articles over the past few days.
“(There is) No real reason why there is no funding. We will definitely file a complaint with the labour office and individually, we might file other complaints but that will come later,” The Star Online quoted Murty as saying.
Eventually, the company asked the staff to go on paid leave. The portal’s English desk staff was asked to go on paid leave on 11th February, while the Mandarin desk, 4 days later.
Last Wednesday (24th February), the staff were told by the company to give them at least one last week to either find funding or they would temporarily shut down the portal.
According to The Rakyat Post’s statement, the news portal will be shut down until further notice as of today. The Facebook post also said that in the coming months, the company will be “undergoing restructuring” and looking at solving their funding issues.
The Rakyat Post, owned by Wespacom Sdn Bhd, began operations in October 2013.