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Malta - March 2023

Case highlights impartiality in state broadcasting

Malta’s Broadcasting Authority (BA) has upheld an impartiality complaint filed against ONE, a media outlet owned by the ruling Labour party, in a significant case in the regulation of party-owned news stations. The Broadcasting Authority ruled against ONE’s decision not to report on ADPD – The Green Party’s press conference about a recent hospital privatisation scandal, and concluded that ONE had been “systematically failing to broadcast ADPD statements in the past months”. It is the first time that BA has found that a station owned by a political party committed a violation by not reporting another party’s perspective. ADPD – The Green Party called on BA to issue directives that would ensure improved media impartiality. The case follows a recent Constitutional Court ruling upholding a judge’s finding in July 2022 that the national broadcaster PBS had failed to treat the National Party impartially by hindering the impact of a political advertisement.

Sources: Times of Malta (1), Times of Malta (2), Times of Malta (3), Malta Independent, ADPD – The Green Party

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Freedom of The Press