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Tonga Media Council expressed its grave concern over the treatment of the two most senior journalists at TBC Featured

Tonga Media Council expressed its grave concern over the treatment of the two most senior journalists at TBC

21 October, 2017. The Media Council Incorporated (Tonga) in a Special Meeting yesterday evening, 19 October 2017, in Nuku'alofa, expressed its grave concern over the treatment of the two most senior journalists working at the Tonga Broadcasting Commission (TBC), Tonga's public broadcasting service.

The abrupt decision by the Board of Directors of TBC to move the long-standing Manager of its News Content, Viola Ulakai, and its News Editor, Laumanu Petelo, for the reasons given that their news coverage was "not pro-Government” and for their transfer to a newly formed division called NGO Services, on the grounds that the TBC was operating at a loss, is in direct opposition to the "impartial, free and fair" principles of public broadcasting.

The impact of such an unethical decision on Press Freedom in Tonga greatly concerns the Media Council Incorporated (Tonga).

The Media Council Incorporated (Tonga) is concerned about the welfare of TBC’s most senior journalists, and the state of Press Freedom in Tonga, considering that we are only weeks away from a General Election on 16 November 2017.

-Tonga Media Council


  • Mark Hanson
    Mark Hanson Monday, 23 October 2017 17:40 Comment Link

    Then do something Media Council. Don't just express your "grave concern" but do something about it, like putting pressure of the Board to tell their Chair that he does not own TBC and not to practice nepotism by appointing his wife's elder sister to be manager of the AM radio.
    It is so funny when people express concern just to show the world that have said something, but no action whatsoever.

  • SialeH Ofafonua
    SialeH Ofafonua Monday, 23 October 2017 11:30 Comment Link

    Fakamaloatau Tonga Media Council Inc. Your prolonged silence has been deafening and about time you wake up to issues directly affecting media freedom in this so-called democratic whatever. Malo e ngaue pea kataki kae toe fakamasila'i mo fakamalohi'iange homou fatongia ke 'oua ta palasia ho'omou tau'ataina ke fai homou fatongia ma'a kimautolu kakai e fonua ni (kae 'ikai ko ho'ou fa'itelia). 'Oku uesia 'emau fanongo Letio atu mei motu ni he kuo 'ikai toe 'omai e ngaahi polokalama 'iloa nemau fa'a ta telefoniatu ai 'o 'oatu 'emau ngaahi fakakaukau ki he ngaahi kaveinga he ongoongo mo e fale alea, 'o tautefito ki he Felafoaki faka'aho he ngaahi Ongoongo. 'Ikai foki kemau toe fanongo he polokalama Vavanga mo e Kanokato. Ko fee homou kau taki he poate mo e pule'anga ke tokoniatu, he kuo tapalasia kimoutolu Viola mo Laumanu mo e kaungaue pea TOE UESIA AI MO 'ENAU TAU'ATAINA KE MA'U E NGAAHI ONGOONGO MO E POLOKALAMA HE FOUNGA TAU'ATAINA KAE 'IKAI FAKAMANAMANA'I KIMOUTOLU 'I HO'OMOU FAI HOMOU FATONGIA FAKAMITIA HE FOUNGA FAKAPOLOFESINALE. 'Ofa atu ki he Mitia Kosilio 'o Tonga mo e kau memipa kotoa.

  • Talakai Finau
    Talakai Finau Monday, 23 October 2017 10:33 Comment Link

    'Ai na oku fiema'u e Akilisi ia ke hoko pe Kele'a ia ko e media ia i Tonga ni, kae ofa mai aa tapuni kotoa e toenga e u media katau melino.

  • Siale H Ofafonua
    Siale H Ofafonua Sunday, 22 October 2017 00:23 Comment Link

    Well, about time TMCI. Your prolonged silence has been quite deafening. At long long last! You need to have "teeth" in your support to fellow journos and media personnel. Malo 'aupito and where to from now TMCI? Please be instrumental in protecting media values and those who provide news and information for us the people of Tonga. You need to defend them from the deliberate dictatorial and draconian attacks from the so-called proponents of media freedom and democratic principles. God please help all of us.


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