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Government vs. RTV as tension builds

Matevz Rudolf 2009-01-26
Tension is building in a stand-off between the new Slovenian Minister of Culture Majda Sirca and public broadcaster RTV.

In an interview with the daily newspaper "Delo," Sirca said, "The Slovenian public broadcaster RTV (www.rtvslo.si) is in cramp." The Minister went on to explain that she will introduce changes in current laws, including, "More autonomy, more responsibility, transparency, and exactly defining what a public broadcaster is."

RTV Director Joze Mozina responded that RTV is not in crisis, and that management controls all the problems and responsibilities that they have. He warned that RTV does not have sufficient money (€10 million) from the government for higher salaries that had been approved by the former government. "It seems that the government would like us to sink in red numbers and subsequently reduce our programming." He believes that new law would not bring positive change since the real problem is insufficient funds.

The former government in 2006 passed a law which restructured the organization of the public broadcaster. The law was criticized at the time by the opposition, who were later voted into office in autumn of 2008. The new government claims RTV was politicized by the 2006 law and wants to change that situation.

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