5 SEPTEMBER 2001

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cartoon this week: Twisting the facts...

Twilight at PBS

The recent report on PBS is an attempt, albeit late in the day to address the question of exaggerated staff complement.

We have been hearing about PBS for too long. We had in the past witnessed attempts to lead PBS down the right road, but unfortunately the people appointed to carry out this task where misfits for the job. Roland Flamini was a case in point. He was too interested in form but lacking in content.

This time with direct involvement of individuals still involved in the private sector, the medicine being offered is rather different … and more potent.

There is much apprehension from the General Workers’ Union and this again re-dimensions the nature of the reforms that need to be taken in hand.

In Malta we have this transition between the need to carry out a study, the leaking or publication of the report and the time to take a decision.

In between all these stages, one is forced to endure public protest, action and opposition to any form or indication of a reform.

This defeats the whole purpose of changing the system.

The PBS is Malta’s national state television, it has been caught in a rut and cannot quite move ahead. It has people with potential but others who are simply hanging on with nothing or little to contribute.

It is an open secret that there are far too many people at PBS running the show, the proposals made by the task force are worthy proposals. It is more like a restaurant with ten cooks and one waiter.

The idea of opening up for new blood is also a noteworthy suggestion.

Yet, it is essential that the newcomers are as independent and objective with no strings attached. They must be divested from the political bandwagon.

More importantly, the real issue is not having a profitable state TV but rather an efficient one that is capable of translating the news and relaying in as unbiased a form as possible.
This is the more difficult task and it does not come with medals.

Bashing once again

Now things have gone too far with this bashing game. We are referring here to taking quotes out of context and blowing them out of all proportion. The reference we are making here is with regards to the Super One chief Alfred Mifsud and former finance minister Leo Brincat commentaries on the economy.

It is strange that in one breath we encourage debate and political discourse, we also go as far as soliciting consensus, and when this happens we come out with our guns blazing. Accusations of dissent and division are hurled and nothing stops the mob from having a feast.

If there was ever a tabloid scene then this is it … and it is so distressing to listen to TV or newspaper viewers repeat this argument without using any of their grey cells.

We encourage consensual politics and a healthy debate on financial and economic issues.

Let us not shoot the messenger, but if we do have to shoot let us shoot down the message.



The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07
Tel: (356) 382741-3, 382745-6 | Fax: (356) 385075 | e-mail: editorial@networkpublications.com.mt