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Page added on March 11, 2012

MDP accuses state media of “blatant propaganda” in letter to Maldives Broadcasting Commission

MDP accuses state media of “blatant propaganda” in letter to Maldives Broadcasting Commission thumbnail

The MDP intends to lodge a complaint against the current practices of the Maldives Broadcasting Corporation’s (MBC) state media outlets, Television Maldives (TVM), and the radio station, Voice of Maldives (VOM).

In a letter, the MDP accused the MBC of violating the agreements mandated by the Public Broadcasting Services (PBS) Act of August 2010 by producing biased content and not giving adequate exposure to all political groups.

TVM and VOM were, the MDP argued, “being blatantly used as propaganda outlets of the coup regime, while the ongoing peaceful political activities of the MDP are being sidelined with little regard to the MBC’s mandate and the nation’s laws under which the MBC is functional.”

“State media airwaves are being clogged incessantly with interviews, views, opinions, and press conferences detailing the regime’s vision by regime loyalist political parties,” MDP alleged.

“On March 6, MDP’s request to buy airtime to broadcast a crucial press conference by Maldives’ first democratically elected President Mohamed Nasheed was met with silence.”

The MDP also accused the group of allowing politicians from the Dhivehi Quamee Party (DQP) and Jumhooree Party (JP) unfettered access to TVM studios and editing booths in contravention of its independent credentials.

JP MP Abbas Adil Riza, named in the letter as one of the MPs seen at TVM, strongly denied the accusation. He was unaware of the complaint and said he did not wish to see the letter. Also named in the letter are the JP’s Ali Hashim and the DQP’s Adbulla Ameen.

The letter reads “MBC is legally bound and mandated to ensure impartiality and independence in its role as a public service provider”.

“According to Article 2 (c) of the Maldives Broadcasting Act the MBC must facilitate nationwide, equitable, and acceptable transmission and broadcasting. According to Article 3 of the Broadcasting Act the MBC is an independent commission of the State.”

The timing of this complaint appears to be related to the Corporation’s failure to respond to MDP requests for media coverage of a speech by former President Mohamed Nasheed on March 6. Copies of the letter were sent to the MBC as well as to the independent media watchdog the Media Council of the Maldives (MMC) on March 7.

The MMC’s duties as prescribed in the Maldives Media Council Bill, is to preserve media freedom and promote ethical practices, as well as to investigate any complaints filed.

Minivan News itself experienced difficulty when trying to contact the MBC for comment on the issues raised by the MDP.

After a group of police, military and opposition supporters stormed the state broadcaster on February 7, shortly after an assault on the military base in Republic Square, President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan’s government rebranded MNBC as TVM – the broadcaster’s title under former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom’s administration.

MNBC was established by Nasheed to run the state media, removing its employees from the jurisdiction of the Civil Service Commission (CSC). In 2010 the then-opposition majority parliament created MBC and demanded the transfer of MNBC’s assets to the new body, which the Nasheed’s government refused to do, alleging political partiality on behalf of the MBC board. Days after the events of February 7, TVM was handed to MBC by the new government.

After this takeover, Chairman of MBC Ibrahim Umar Manik expressed his commitment to run the state media with “impartiality” and within legal bounds.

“As stated in the law, we will operate the two stations as a public broadcaster by bringing independent news, information and programs,” Manik claimed.

Maldives Media Council

President of the Maldives Media Council Mohamed Nazeef said he was not yet aware of the MDP complaint although he stated that he would “be very interested” if it were to come to his attention.

His desk is the first place such complaints go to when received, at which point it is standard practice for the Council to attempt a resolution before the official investigative procedures are initiated.

A member of the Council’s Secretariat said no official complaints had been received in recent weeks although there had been a slight increase in the number of people making informal complaints in person.

Discussing the current condition of public media in the country, Nazeef said that he had “noticed an improvement” in the weeks since the Nasheed administration ended.

“[Public Broadcasters] can’t do the same thing as before. They have to give equal time to all political parties,” Nazeef said.

He said he believed that there was little difference between the Gayoom and the Nasheed eras, in terms of media impartiality.

“Television Maldives was same before [under Nasheed] as it had been for thirty years under Gayoom, apart from 2007 and 2008, when it was a little more lenient,” he said.

The most pressing concerns, in the opinion of the Council President, are the lack of social programming and need for better education in the sector. A typical area mentioned as being in need of improvement was investigative journalism.

“This is where the media fails in the past twenty years,” Nazeef continued, “most people are trained for private broadcasting.”

Nazeef recently discussed these issues with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) which advocates a robust media as the key to sustaining democracy.

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31 Comments on "MDP accuses state media of “blatant propaganda” in letter to Maldives Broadcasting Commission"

  1. Dhivehi Hanguraama on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 8:30 PM 

    That is an admirable goal!

    Slander is a legitimate starategem of war! The yellow hordes of goat fornicaters and feminists must be defeated at all costs!

    The wombs of our women must be purified, so that they do not give birth to zionists! Alhamdulillaah!

  2. Gafoor on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 9:19 PM 

    “BREAKING NEWS”

    Umar Naseer and Dr. Hassan Saeed has been banned from talking to the media by a presidential decree.

  3. Aisha on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 9:23 PM 

    Finally B.Waheed is making some sense, its about time he stopped them opening their mouths.

    Seriously you want need enemies if Umar Naseer and Hassan Saeed are on your side.

  4. Ahmed on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 9:34 PM 

    HAHAHA, Nasheed and MDP are missing MNBC, What a joke, people who systematically produced biased content and people who did not not give any exposure to any other political group other themselves are now on the recieving end, who cares, inevitable I say!!! Gdluck Mininvan, an uphill battle of words for you lot!!

  5. Lance Farrell on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 10:06 PM 

    Dhivehi:

    Yes, we’ve seen how you purify the wombs of your women–it’s called genital mutilation

    Here’s a newsflash: they aren’t YOUR women, they own themselves. The view you express is inhumane.

    At least you confess to your violent intentions by describing the situation as a war.

  6. Simple and honest on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 10:08 PM 

    It’s a good thing that the military saved the public media from the jaws of President Nasheed… That doesnt mean it has to broadcast national songs since its transmission begins till it ends..

  7. Yasir on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 11:25 PM 

    Now who is this david bosley? Another jew or christian from the west who has joined MN to promote antimuslim ideas and hatred in our country in the name od journalism. I hope this government chucks out all these foreign journalists of MN.

  8. mode on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 11:30 PM 

    what the hell dictator Nasheed was doing with the TVM for last three years. MDP should be ashamed of talking of fair and free media .

    When MDP was in power, these issues when raised are jokes and today it is a condition and is a constitutional right. I don’t think there was any amendments to the current since Dr. waheed took over the office.

    Anni is a lier and MDP need to get rid of Anni decease to win the election.

  9. Lanka Ashford on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 11:43 PM 

    To HELL WITH THESE COUP REGIME! ITS SICKENING! THE GIMMICKS USED. PEOPLE, WALK UP TO THE WAHEED RESIDENCE AND CHUCK HIM OUT OF THE COUNTRY. LET HIM GO TO BERMUDA TRIANGLE!

  10. idrees on Sun, 11th Mar 2012 11:45 PM 

    MDP or RATHER A HIJACKED PARTY BY MARIYA DIDI AND REKKO MOOSA NEEDS TO BE SAVED AS PUBLIC MONEY IS GIVEN TO EACH YEAR AND ALSO MDP DISTROY AND BURNS PUBLIC PROPERTY AND ALSO CREATE HATRED AND SUPPORT VIOLENCE IN MALDIVES. NASHEED IS ALWAYS HIDDING BEHIND MARIYA AND REKKO MOOSA. NASHEED ONLY WANTS EXTREME MP’S WHO CAN CONTROL THUGS! NASHEED IS LOOSING PUBLIC SUPPORT NOW! NOT BECAUSE GAYOOM THE DICTATOR IS FAMOUS…BUT PUBLIC IS FED UP BY MARIYA AND REKKO MOOSA STYLE OF MDP!!!

  11. Ibrahim Mohamed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:28 AM 

    On themorning of he coup MNBC one was hijacked by the Coup perpetrators and the VTV was streamed live from the broadcaster. Nobody ever questioned this and even the Broadcasting Commission ahd no guts to investigate why such an atrocity was carried out by coup perpetrators.Not for a moment did the news media in Maldives pause and think: The political landscape had undergone a dramatic, if not revolutionary, change, so should the ‘business as usual’ kind of reporting continue or should the change in landscape require a change in approach?

  12. Ibrahim Mohamed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:50 AM 

    Well Im telling this to media sources such as VTV and DHitv, especially to Haveeru,when you all reported the allegations of corruption of the MDP parlimentarians you forgot the major corruption allegations of other prty MPs.Where was the balance and impartiality in your stories.All this media was condoning the verdicts of corrupted judges. While for MP Mustafa such a judgement will never be possible anywhere in the world they gave this landmark judgement and the media just brought one side of it. The role played by each media in the aftermath of the coup and medias role in the lead up to the coup will be studied by our future generations to come. There will be a day when our future generations will condemn the acts of todays journalists. Another disturbing trend as I see it is the gullible nature of the local media industry. Obvious questions remained unasked, and anything and everything that falls from the mouth of coup instigators and supporters is taken as nothing but truth. Explanations are left unchallenged, distortions lie undetected, and lies masquerade as facts. Almost every article written by Hamdhoon the self educated journalist without university education is a good example of this. It is a shame that most of the journalists are collaborating with a coup regime.

  13. Ibrahim Mohamed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:58 AM 

    Why is Dhitv flooding youtube with edited videos, masking the real scenario which lead up to the coup and the aftermath of the coup! Your not the only ones with video footage of what happened in these days.The whole cyberspace is filled with pcitures, videos and voice recordings. You should stop calling yourselves journalists. There is no word for such people wearing the hat of a journlaist but shaming the professionalism of journalism. Sadly most of you have never seen the gates of a university let alone your Ordinarly level pass in English

  14. Lanka Ashford on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 1:15 AM 

    WAHEED IS A PUPPET OF THE US AND INDIA. BOTH THE US AND INDIA SENT CONGRATULATORY MESSAGES TO CROOK WAHEED, WHEN THE WHOLE WORLD WAS IN SHOCK TRYING TO ABSORB WHAT HAS HAPPENED.THE US AND INDIA WERE TOO QUICK! THUS THE DOUBT REMAINS OF THEIR INVOLVEMENT.THEY ARE PUTTING THEIR CLAWS INTO MALDIVES; THIS IS BEING FACILITATED BY THE USE OF THESE CROOKY BASTARDS; ie., WAHEED THE HYENA!…

  15. Yasir on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 4:24 AM 

    MDP can go to hell now. Now we the people of this country are our own bosses.

  16. Sigh on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 9:41 AM 

    I am not even reading this article. just wanted to make a comment on the headline? come on! is it suppose to be funny? Where was MDP’s democratic values and independent media when Reeko Moosa directed his own news reports own television station? Governments key parliamentarian sits inside the editing booth. Well God and few MDP heads know for sure what he did in there but whatever it was, it was came on prime time news? The fact is that, National Televison had always been treated like a whore. whoever comes, screws her. But one thing is for sure, it will take surely another 3 years to ruin the National Television as badly as MDP did. for God sake, does MDP even remember who Mohamed Nasheed appointed to run the station? *Sigh*

  17. Radhun on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 9:52 AM 

    MDP filling complains about biased reporting..hahahaa what a laugh. And the best part is how bias is “Minivan News owned by Nazim the younger brother of Dictator Nasheed.
    This is the game Nasheed started and will continue and it might be biased or unbiased to opporsition. Just try and digest.

  18. Radhun on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 9:55 AM 

    “BREAKING NEWS” LAILA HAS FILED A DIVORCE SUIT TO THE COURT. SOON MARIA WILL FOLLOW…HMMMM INTERESTING.

  19. Impartial Comments on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 10:50 AM 

    Technically, the state media belongs to the (surprise) state, and is almost always used to calm the people down, in times of unrest.

    It would be counterproductive to use it to whip people into a frenzy and cause the population to come to more harm.

  20. Aa on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 11:53 AM 

    Yasir, Mode and gang are sick in the head, drunk with corruption and out of touch with the real Maldives and the rest of the world. Embarrassing!! Welcome to the Neanderthal world of the Maldives Daniel. Nice debut by the way!!

  21. Ahmed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:02 PM 

    Now, let’s re examine the facts… On the morning of the 7th February the only tv station that was pro MDP was over run by force and guns as witnessed on YouTube and there are still those people who are not sure if this was fair and proper procedure and dare suggest that this was not unfair and not a COUP…???

    We all know that TVM and all the other media outlets are controlled by the minority cartel of the corrupt business men and Gayoom and Yamin pact. Anywhere else in the world and government would be in prison by now for Treason.

    ELECTION DATE ANNOUNCEMENT IS LONG OVERDUE!!!!

  22. ahmed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:09 PM 

    Despite the fact Nasheed gained enormous worldwide popularity during his presidency for his stance on global warming, the achilles heel of his presidency was his publicity on the domestic front.

    The projects for which he campaigned, promoted and commenced are all worthy of true merit and rooted deeply in the needs of communities across the Maldives. who would not want better housing, sewage networks, water, harbors, healthcare?

    but the shear strength of opposition media combined smeared the image of nasheed, his campaign and his party member, barraging the media with news ranging from perceived grand corruption to sex scandals.

    The corruption that took place for 30 years seemed long gone and forgiven.

    Media has been proven as a useful tool to topple a democracy in history and our own recent past is evidence of the fact.

    But i wonder how successful will the media combined be to hide an obvious fact that this entire political change and the power shift is the result of the old regime coming back to power once again.

    How convincing can their arguments be that the democracy that was sown is now being shattered and we are on our way back to what maldives was before.

  23. Sir Ya on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:10 PM 

    Can someone please tell me, how “I” can get to hell when is is not going to accept me, ever?

  24. Aymina Faanu on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:14 PM 

    This is not probably the right place for this but since Musthafa is mentioned, not my favorite person though, I thought I’ll view my thoughts. BCCI,…..I have never been able to come to agreement about what Maldivian government did was the right thing. Well when a bank is closed there are few things that could be done…..1) pay the depositors with the money that the banks has,… this would be only a % of the depositors money. 2) the assets and liabilities of the bank could be taken over by another bank. This was not the case in the Maldives. BCCI-Maldives case is a success story, why? All the depositors were paid in full with their interest component. The bank was closed MMA taking care of the accounts,…people who borrowed had to pay their loans with very high interest rate not only the principal amount. It was operating like a bank that is functioning, though it was officially closed. Only because Maumoon promised the public that the depositors would be paid in full. I don’t think legally this was right not that I have any international banking law background. When the bank was closed lot of business that was using the bank also had received money from abroad, but the last few minutes of bank closure many inappropriate things happens with the documentation….some papers went missing ….its all an unfair deal for all BCCI borrowers.

  25. Mohamed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 12:38 PM 

    Where is their favourite MNBC…that was operated by whatever mean by the then government…write to them..or change the Rajje TVs name to MNBC….MDP has occupied the raalhugandu area not giving it for even children to enjoy, not even giving the chance to use for the helicopter landing for a patient who did pass away later..

  26. fareeda on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 3:38 PM 

    MDP is obviously upset cos state tv is finally free from yellow propaganda!
    pre 07 feb, state tv was full of mdp party rallies
    All the best to MBC i say they are doing just fine :)

  27. Citizen on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 4:52 PM 

    The very essence of news reporting is reporting accurate and factual information. To that end as an independent observer, I find that TVM’s news reports are currently more balanced, factual, and more truthful than when compared to prior Feb7 2012 news reported by MNBC One.

    However after the demise of MNBC One, the tasks of promoting MDP propaganda have now been taken up by RaajeTV, which has stepped up the hate-reporting to another level, and continues to spread untrue and unverified information (eg: RaajeTV reporting on 8th Feb that two people had died in Male demonstrations, when nobody had died actually leading to Addu protests escalating into a riot in Addu and the torching of numerous state buildings and vehicles).

    RaajeTV continues to report MDP propaganda and unverified information, and is continuously trying to encourage criminal acts of violence (eg: encouraging Maldivians to commit violence and arson against state corporations and Police).

    Maldives Broadcasting corporation (The independent media commission assigned to review acts of media outlets, whose members were appointed by former president Mohamed Nasheed during his term in office) has already issued several warnings to RaajeTV to cease spreading lies and unverified information and stop trying to create hatred amidst Maldivians towards the Govt and state institutions, but RaajeTV seems determined to further divide Maldivian society by inciting hatred and violence in its news reports, but it does not seem that RaajeTV will cease reporting untruthful information.

    The result is that plainly evident facts (such as the fact that Anni resigned) are now ‘reported’ in RaajeTV as “Anni forced to step down at Gunpoint due to Lynch Mob of Police and army who had surrounded him with AK-47′s and were threating to shoot him unless he resigned”. Truth does not seem to matter to RaajeTV newsreporters, they are only interested in bending the truth to portray the news that they want, eg: When a dozen MDP activists shouted “resign Waheed” at Hulhumale when Waheed visited Hulumale, then RaajeTV reported that news as if thousands of people were demonstrating against Waheed. Distortion of the truth in the most blatant manner.

    I would advise all Maldivians not to rely on a single source. In my opinion Sunmv tends to report the most independent and impartial news nowadays.

  28. ila on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 6:20 PM 

    who is this nazeef, who commented on behalf of mald media council.. hes a paid extremist who is trying to promote extremism via his fm radio channel (where he present and manages) backed by the coup leaders sheikh imran and sheikh shaheem . ofcourse financed by Gasim and Uhchu champaa

  29. Ibrahim Mohamed on Mon, 12th Mar 2012 8:27 PM 

    @citizen, for you raaje tv seems an issue, when TVM promotes the coup government it is impartial. What a silly joke. The gathering storm for a coup which lead to chaos and demise of democracy was the fault of VTV and DHitv and you forgot about them (pathetic liers). MNBC one was more open and more critical even though they advocatefor governments initiatives. Currently it is just like VTV and the fact is VTV was streamed live from state broadcaster which is a violation and infringement of all laws. What if someone else comes and humps your wife for a while and makes it legal by blaming the situation

  30. ahmed on Tue, 13th Mar 2012 12:07 PM 

    @Citizen
    Last Friday VTV did a piece with Women protestors in focus. They started off by showing the women on the front line shouting at the police, then it went on to describe how it was a bad example in front of children, it then went further showing images of Qauba and people on pilgrimage with a voice over describing how the whole thing was also an act against islam and its virtues. The whole piece was a feeble propaganda attempt, isn’t this media on the extreme, so much so they had to show images of the holy gefulhu to make their point. This is pure degradation not only of independent media but our religion as well. Your so called comment is entirely biased and invalid.

  31. Yasir on Wed, 14th Mar 2012 3:40 AM 

    State TV is not a property of Anni’s dad. So Anni can go to hell. Take his disgusting yellow fever people also with him and fish off from this country. This place will be so peaceful after that.


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