M1 promotes partisanship for Communists party: monitoring data show

The television stations paid from the tax-payers' money, Moldova 1, promotes political partisanship for the Communists Party (PCRM), ruling Moldova since 2001, show the results of a monitoring session carried out by Electronic Press Association (APEL).
Info-Prim Neo, 20 February 2009, 18:38

2009-02-20/15:27/ Chisinau (IPN)  The report was presented Friday at a news conference hosted by Info-Prim Neo news agency.

The public television is joined in practicing pro-PCRM political partisanship by other two private stations based in Chisinau: NIT and N4. The monitoring data show that EU TV presents an enhanced amount of positivist materials about the People's Cristian-Democratic Party (PPCD), and those four stations mentioned air reports and broadcasts denigrating the political opponents of the PCRM and the PPCD.

APEL's monitoring envisages the pre-election period: January 1- February 3, as its experts analyzed broadcasts with political actors aired by 9 TV stations from Chisinau. "A series of stations (M1, NIT, N4) showed themselves guided by the political interests of the PCRM, and EU TV granted priority to the PPCD," reads a communique distributed at the conference. "Worth to remark is that other stations (PRO TV, TV 7 and TVC 21) proved being attached to the values of political pluralism and to treating the events and phenomena in society equidistantly," reads APEL's release.

APEL expert Vasile State, the coordinator of the monitoring project, has said the report will be first sent to the Broadcasting Coordinating Council, the institution in charge with supervising the implementation of the Broadcasting Code. He has added copies will be sent to the monitored stations and to observers of the electoral race.

The State University's Journalism Faculty dean Constantin Marin says "article 7 of the Broadcasting Code writes very clear how the TV stations should behave when making reference to a political party, the view of a political party or some other. If you relate those provisions to the statistics, you'll see that a fair amount of TV stations do not abide by those provisions."

The 36-page report finds that M1 aired 161 stories in which president Vladimir Voronin is put in positive context, followed by deputy premier Igor Dodon (25) and premier Zinaida Greceanai, who appeared in 20 news stories. The PCRM was presented by the public television in a positive context in 193 stories, followed by the Social-Democratic Party (6) and Moldova Noastra Alliance (3).

Moldova Noastra Alliance leader Serafim Urecheanu is the politician liked the least by M1. He was put in negative context in 24 stories, followed by Centrist Union leader Vasile Tarlev (16). Urecheanu and his party are most often presented in negative light also by EU TV , PRO TV and TV 7, while Chisinau mayor Dorin Chirtoaca is the first of the 'bad guys list' of NIT and N4.
APEL's project is financed by the Delegation of the European Commission in Moldova and is running within the Civic Coalition for Free and Fair Elections - Coalition 2009. It pursues to contribute to ensuring a fair, transparent and democratic electoral process and to form professional skills in television to present the politicians fairly and impartially.