Parliamentary question - O-000180/2012Parliamentary question

  Discrimination against TV Trwam by Poland's National Broadcasting Council


Question for oral answer O-000180/2012
to the Commission
Rule 115
Zbigniew Ziobro
on behalf of the EFD Group

Poland’s National Broadcasting Council has rejected an application from the Lux Veritatis foundation for a digital broadcasting licence for TV Trwam (a Catholic TV channel).

In its most recent report, Poland’s Supreme Audit Office (NIK) – an independent body performing audit functions in Poland – found irregularities in the granting of licences for the digital platform. These irregularities allegedly related to the actions of the National Broadcasting Council (KRRiTV). One of the accusations was that entities not meeting the conditions for concessions were promoted at the expense of those that did. The failure to award a concession to TV Trwam, for example, was viewed negatively. It should be noted that this is a television station which is critical of the current government and president.

More than 2.25 million Polish citizens have signed a petition demanding that TV Trwam be granted a place on the multiplex and protesting against the restriction of media pluralism in Poland. Also, protest marches several thousand strong have been held in more than 60 Polish cities and towns. Five KRRiTV members are political appointees under an agreement concluded by the political parties ruling in Poland today. The head of the KRRiTV, a former member of the ruling Civic Platform party (Platforma Obywatelska – PO), was appointed by President Bronisław Komorowski, who is also from the PO.

These facts warrant the Commission taking seriously the violation of freedom and pluralism in connection with irregularities in the process of digitisation.

What specific action will the Commission take, and when, to check the validity of such suspicions of media freedom and pluralism being restricted in Poland, suspicions which are supported by large-scale popular protests and backed up by an NIK audit?

Tabled: 31.10.2012

Forwarded: 2.11.2012

Deadline for reply: 9.11.2012