Friday, September 19, 2008

Rules on referendum coverage criticised

RULES WHICH mean that opposing sides in a referendum must get equal coverage are a "charter for every awkward squad", a Broadcasting Commission of Ireland (BCI) conference heard yesterday.

Today FM chief executive Willie O'Reilly, who is chairman of the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland (IBI), said the requirement gave the No side in the Lisbon Treaty referendum more credibility and less scrutiny than it deserved.

Mr O'Reilly said there was a clear discrepancy between the mandate of the Yes side, which included all the major political parties with the exception of Sinn Féin, and the No side, which largely comprised groups that were not elected, citing the example of Libertas founder Declan Ganley.

"We need to look at how a charismatic person with funding that was questionable was elevated by default by the media into a position of leading what seemed to be a nationwide campaign, yet that person had no mandate," he said.

1 comment:

The Reviewer said...

This is a ridiculous statement, in a supposed Democratic country all referendum coverage should be equal and non-partizan.