Fringe party Alleanza Bidla has started online streaming its own political station after its discussion TV programme was cancelled by the Broadcasting Authority until after next month’s local and European elections.
Party co-leader Ivan Grech Mintoff told the Times of Malta that his current affairs show Exodus, which until a few weeks ago used to be broadcast on F-Living TV, had been banned until after the European Parliament and local council elections set for the end of May.
“We refuse to abide by the BA's undemocratic decision. Exodus will therefore be broadcasting as Exodus DGT TV transmitting 24 hours-a-day, every day, on the internet and via IPTV,” he said.
Mr Grech Mintoff said the BA was insisting that its decision was meant to ensure fair media coverage in the run-up to the local council and European elections.
However, the Eurosceptic Grech Mintoff does not see it that way.
“The two major parties have their own TV and radio stations and can transmit their political message all day without being limited by the Broadcasting Authority,” he said.
All other minor parties, Mr Grech Mintoff added, were merely given a few minutes each on the public service channel during the five-week campaign period.
He later accused the BA of going against the values of free speech and democracy, insisting the lopsided media landscape raised concerns over the legitimacy of the upcoming elections in the first place.
“Exodus will not be silenced. We have broken the PN and PL’s media duopoly once and for all and is now louder than ever before.
“Now, everyone can see us and we hope to get a larger audience than before,” he said.
And he plans to use this new channel to further “address the present imbalance in political media” by offering time to all the other parties and individual candidates on the TV station.
“We insist that the Maltese voter be given the right to hear from all parties in the elections. We will practise the democracy that we believe in,” he said.
This is not the first time Mr Grech Mintoff has taken to the internet to circumvent attempts to block his programme from being aired.
Back in 2016 he uploaded one of his more controversial epi-sodes on YouTube after it was not allowed to air.
At the time, Mr Grech Mintoff had been discussing allegations, first reported by this newspaper, that an official in the office of the Prime Minister was involved in a Libyan medical visas racket.
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