Coalition 2009 concerned about media bias in parliamentary race

The Coalition for Free and Fair Elections – Coalition 2009 is urging the broadcasters involved in covering the parliamentary race to adopt professional standards of correctness, while advising the Broadcasting Coordination Council (BCC) to react more promptly to violations in the media.
Info-Prim Neo, 9 July 2009, 18:57

2009-07-09/17:31/ Chisinau (IPN) “Bearing in mind the importance attached to mass-media as a source of information, in particular during election campaigns, the Coalition 2009 is calling on the broadcasters in Moldova to ensure that throughout the duration of the electoral process their programs contain pluralism of opinion and sociopolitical balance, which is so necessary for the information of the citizen in a manner that will enable him to make a conscious and competent choice”, the Coalition said in a statement, quoted by Info-Prim Neo.

The recommendation comes in connection with concerns over the way in which Moldovan audiovisual institutions are covering the cam paign that precedes the early legislative elections on July 29. The first three weeks of the race have demonstrated clear political bias practiced by some TV channels in their newscasts and programs, the organization says.

The Coalition refers in particular to the flagship nightly news broadcast on the public television Moldova 1: “The Mesager news program is continuing to manipulate the public opinion, transforming the main news broadcast of the day into a space for propaganda of the government's achievements, of messages from the ruling party, and for slandering the opposition.”

The Coalition also remarks that a number of television stations, including NIT, N4, Omega and MIR, are distorting the events that occur in the race using a simple formula: the government and the ruling party personify the good, which is worth being endorsed by the voters, and the opposition represents the evil, which must be condemned and punished in the upcoming el ections.

“The silence and inactivity demonstrated by the BCC in observing and monitoring the behavior of the broadcasters in the election campaign means irresponsibility and denotes its complicity with the transgressing broadcasters”, the Coalition concludes.