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Independent body to monitor media

Nasik Swami
Saturday, April 26, 2014

THE Media Industry Development Authority is awaiting feedback from heads of various media organisations on what they think should be the composition of the independent body to monitor political coverage of all media organisations.

"We have made suggestions and waiting for the editor's feedbacks. It's for them to put in their ideas," said authority director Matai Akauola.

"That's why the editors will decide, it might be a group independent of MIDA — the group can say at the end of the day this is what they saw in the media reporting."

Earlier, MIDA chair Ashwin Raj told this newspaper the independent body would monitor the media to ensure they gave equal access to all political parties in the lead-up to the general election.

Mr Raj said they received complaints, not just from political parties but from government and members of the public, of some media organisations being biased.

"You know, people say that we have not been given equal amount of access so we will have an independent unit to see how much access political parties and government are getting," he said.

Mr Raj said giving equal access to political parties, government and other entities was a requirement for media organisations.

"So we need to ensure there is evidence-based intervention.

"Nobody should presume that a particular media organisation is biased towards a particular political party or a particular entity," said Mr Raj.

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