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TVNZ-RNZ merger process disgraceful

Responding to news that Cabinet has agreed to a RNZ, TVNZ merger, the Taxpayers’ Union Chairman, Barrie Saunders, said:

“Restructuring of public broadcasting should be a cross-party effort, also involving the wider public. Here we have RNZ reporting on its own future, without so much as the Cabinet paper being available. It is a disgraceful process.

“The irony is the Commerce Commission blocked NZME and Stuff from merging on the grounds this would diminish media diversity, and now we have the Government proposing a major reduction in diversity by legislation.

”There is no urgency – the Government should issue a White Paper and take it from there.

“Whatever sort of entity results, it should be required to reflect diversity in opinion and programming. The path so far does not give us much confidence.”

Barrie Saunders is a former journalist, having worked for the NZBC, BBC, ABC (Australia), edited the NBR, and was a director of TVNZ 2011-2017.


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