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Only PN and PL to face off each other in downsized Broadcasting Authority debates

Alternattiva Demokratika up in arms over omission from political debates: 'Broadcasting Authority only acting in the interest of the Nationalist and Labour parties'

Yannick Pace
5 May 2017, 3:13pm
Alternattiva Demokratika has been kept out of debates with PL and PN
Alternattiva Demokratika has been kept out of debates with PL and PN
The schedule for political broadcasting in the run up to the election that has been proposed by the Broadcasting Authority is only intended to serve the interests of the Nationalist and Labour parties, according to Ralph Cassar, the secretary general of Alternattiva Demokratika (AD) – the green party.

“Contrary to the norm in recent elections, Alternattiva Demokratika is being kept out of debates with the PL and PN, as well as a programme marking the end of the campaign,” said Cassar.

“While the authority had in the past understood that AD was at a disadvantage when it came to broadcasting means, and had improved the allocation of air-time, we have no gone back to scheduling of political broadcasts that is more primitive”

AD is appealing for more time to be allocated to it by the Broadcasting Authority. Moreover, the party said it was expecting the authority, through the Public Broadcasting Services (PBS), counteract the imbalance created by party media, which they said were continually broadcasting “electoral propaganda”.

In a reaction, the BA said it was obliged, by the Constitution, to organize schemes of political broadcasts, which have always been discussed with the interested parties so that, as far as possible, a fair approach in terms of time allocation to political parties contesting the election is achieved. 

“All political parties were presented with a scheme and schedule of political broadcasts and were invited to submit in writing their reaction and their position for the consideration by the Authority, which submissions will determine further decisions in the finalization of the document,” the BA said.

“Furthermore, the Broadcasting Authority denies the claims put forward by Alternattiva Demokratika.”

Yannick joined MaltaToday as a journalist in 2016. His main areas of interest are politics...