Opposition leader Bernard Grech has announced that the PN is looking into legal avenues to stop the government “controlling PBS”, arguing that the party cannot simply play by the book anymore.
“No one doubts that [Prime Minister] Robert Abela is taking control of the national broadcaster by filling it with people close to him and the Labour Party,” Grech said on NET FM today.
“You can tell from their reports that the news is continuously being manipulated to favour the government and place the Opposition at a disadvantage. People ask us why our message isn’t reaching people; this is one of the reasons.”
“The time has come to stop only going by the book. If the government is going to act like this, we must be bold and take the necessary actions. The people have a right to hear us too.”
Grech referred to Mark Laurence Zammit’s announcement this morning that he has quit his popular TVM discussion show L-Erbgħa Fost il-Ġimgħa due to “excessive interference” by PBS.
“If someone has any doubt as to whether PBS and its programmes have been seized or not, then look at what Mark Laurence Zammit said today,” he said.
“There are many serious people and journalists at PBS but the system and the people who control it aren’t allowing all the staff to do their work as they should. Robert Abela must move from empty words to facts. So long as he keeps seizing PBS, Robert Abela will keep perpetuating the damage caused by the octopus that has seized the country.”
PBS executive chairman Mark Sammut has played down Zammit’s allegation, arguing that the presenter’s decision to leave the show might have stemmed from his discomfort with the national broadcasters rigid regulations.
“We actually never met or had any interaction with Mark Lawrence Zammit,” Sammut told Lovin Malta.
“PBS being the state station, as you may know is bound by rigid regulations, and continuously monitored by the regulator, and all programmes must contain political correctness and balances.”
“The only logical interpretation to Mark Laurence’s reaction is maybe he wasn’t comfortable with these types of balances and regulations?”
“On the other hand, I must point out that PBS always had and still has a very good working relationship with WE media.”
Cover photos: L-Erbgħa Fost il-Ġimgħa
Do you agree with Bernard Grech’s assessment of PBS?