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20.03.2010

Cabinet of Ministers assumes control over State television

   

The Cabinet of Ministers has transferred to itself the functions of managing the National Television Company of Ukraine which was previously under the jurisdiction of the State Committee on Television and Radio Broadcasting. 

The report on the government’s website says that the functions of managing NTCU shall be carried out by the Cabinet of Ministers, and instructs the Ministry of Finance and State Committee on Television and Radio Broadcasting when the State Budget for 2010 and for following years is being drawn up to allocate expenditure for ensuring the activities of NTCU.

The Cabinet of Ministers had previously appointed as President of NTCU Yehor Benkendorf to replace Vasyl Ilashchuk.  It thus entirely ignored the appeal from the Media Law Institute, “Telekritika” and the Institute for Mass Information to the President to not make appointments which are unconstitutional. They pointed out that the Constitutional Court had on 15 September 2009 found Article 14 of the Law “On Television and Radio Broadcasting” dealing with procedure for the appointment and dismissal of the heads of NTCU and the National Radio Broadcasting Company of Ukraine [NRCU] to be unconstitutional, and stressed that “the President of Ukraine and the Verkhovna Rada cannot have power with respect to the staffing of NTCU since such powers are not given them by the Constitution. In our opinion, the only correct way out of this situation is to urgently consider and pass amendments to the Law “On Television and Radio Broadcasting”, as recommended by the Constitutional Court.”

New information reported here

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