JOURNALISTS of banned news magazine Tempo were warned yesterday not to let their eagerness to re-open the magazine compromise the struggle for greater democracy. Former editor-in-chief Goenawan Mohamad told a meeting of about 50 journalists and former editors there would be no point in publishing the magazine again unless it was able to maintain editorial independence. He was responding to a push among former employees to resume publishing as early as January after Jakarta's High Administrative Court last week effectively overturned the ban. His comments were an apparent reference to problems within the board of directors. An inside source claimed unless these could be solved, the objective reportage that once made Tempo Indonesia's most popular magazine might be compromised. 'It is ironic that Tempo may have come this far only to have its hopes dashed,' the source said. Minister of Information Harmoko shut down Tempo and two other magazines in June last year on charges of disrupting national stability, but his move was overturned by the courts. The source said that before the ban, Mr Goenawan, three shareholders and employees held a majority share in the company, dominating the board. However, after the closure, the employees were forced to sell out, creating two equal factions in the board of directors, one led by Mr Goenawan and the other consisting of businessmen Harjoko Trisnadi, Lukman Setiawan, Mahtoem Mastoem, Herry Komar and Ciputra. The businessmen stayed on the board of Tempo but also joined the board of directors of a newly established, pro-government magazine, Gatra, published by Era Media Indonesia and owned by influential businessmen including timber tsar Bob Hasan. Former Tempo journalists claim Gatra took up a press licence promised to them. They also say that if Tempo began publishing again, the Gatra faction on the board would suffer a conflict of interest because the two magazines would be in direct competition.