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Threats by PM against TBC affected its coverage of events Featured

Laumanu Petelo Laumanu Petelo

6 June, 2017. A consultant for the Tonga Broadcasting Commission says threats by the prime minister against the state broadcaster affected its coverage of events.

 The general manager and chair of the TBC were dismissed following comments by the prime minister that the broadcaster was an enemy of government and did not support his work enough.

He also threatened its services would be taken over by another company if the relationship continued on the same route.

The TBC's Laumanu Petelo said the comments initially intimidated staff.

"As to changing our stories to focus more on things that will be positive to government, rather than getting stories that are balanced and unbiased.

"So we felt that we were kind of changing our roles to try to fit in to what the prime minister and government wanted."

However Laumanu Petelo said, with court proceedings and media coverage of the affair, she felt things were starting to improve.


1 comment

  • Aisea Matiu
    Aisea Matiu Wednesday, 07 June 2017 03:13 Comment Link

    The rule through fear is an excellent psychological and social tool of political control. Once that is exhausted, then the rule through physical persecution becomes inevitable, as in the case of imprisonment. When that no longer works then death becomes the final solution.

    These are characteristic features of all forms of oppressive rule, as were the rule of all Nazism, Fascism and Communism. The case of TBC workers and the whole of government employees is a clear case, which begins with the psychological through the physical to the final solution: death!


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