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Eight NPTU branches protested against regional broadcast reduction

25.02.2020, 18:08
Photo credit: radiosvoboda.org
Photo credit: radiosvoboda.org

On February 25, national-wide rally in support of the regional public television and radio, called “News Hour”, was held under the premises of eight broadcasters of regional Public television, as “Media Detector”  reported.

Participants of the rally demanded not to reduce the regional broadcasting of Public TV to one hour a day. In some regional branches, the managers came out to see the protesters, asking to avoid manipulation and assured that television and radio content would be increased to four hours a day.

Rallies in support of the Public took place in Zaporozhye, Zhytomyr, Mykolaiv, Kherson, Lutsk, Uzhgorod, Rivne and Ivano-Frankivsk.

The Kropivnytska branch was also willing to take part in the protest action, but because of death of a local figure, they postponed the protest to February 26.

Some aemployees of the regional branches, activists, and political parties officials and local authorities demanded to suspend the PJSC “NPTU” regional broadcasting concept for 2020–2021, according to which NPTU regional branches will produce one hour of their own content and one and a half hours on radio. They demanded 3 hours 10 minutes of content for its own production on regional television and radio, as the branches broadcast as of February 25. And they demanded to increase quantity of regional broadcasts on Public broadcasting service.

Participants of the action kept posters with such inscriptions: "Local broadcasting should be increased, not reduced twice" and "I defend Public".

“We stand for the development of regional broadcasting throughout Ukraine,” the editor of “Ukrainian Radio. Lutsk ” Svetlana Mekh said.

The participants of the action called on all those who are not indifferent to join the flash mob. To do this, you need to shoot a short video in support of the regional Public and post on your page on social networks.

In Uzhgorod and Kherson branch managers came to speak to the protesters.

“UA: Kherson” manager Oksana Shylo and branch producer Rustam Avdeyev assured that “UA: Kherson”, like all other branches of the Public, was keeping broadcasting, and beginning from next season the audience and listeners would see a significant increase in the program on the air,  as “UA: Kherson" reported.

According to Oksana Shiloh, the reduction of broadcasting is not happening: on the contrary, even the budget for external production is tenfold increased and in March the open competition for projects for regional television and radio will be announced.

“We want the Kherson residents together with us to decide what content will be broadcast on the Public. Therefore, we invite all involved in the media community, as well as people with ideas to participate in the competitive selection of projects, ”Oksana Shilo said.

IMI reported that the Central Directorate of the National Public Broadcasting Company of Ukraine (NPTU) has submitted to the branches a new staff list, which lists reduced number of staff positions in the regions, as “Detektor Media” reported citing its sources of information.

As “Detektor Media” could learn, they prepare some staff reduction in the regional branches. Some of them have to cut down almost 50% of positions, from 90 to 43-47 positions. They have to reduce the number of staff in branches that have editions of national minority languages ​​(according to the concept of regional broadcasting of PJSC "NSTU " for 2020-2021, such as "UA: Transcarpathia", "UA: Odessa" and "UA: Bukovina" ), and the combined Donetsk and Lugansk oblasts, which broadcasts into the controlled and temporarily occupied territories of “UA: Donbass”. It is also known that the new staff list includes 116 employees on “UA: Donbass”  channel, 23 less than today.

Currently, there are 1950 people employed at NPTU's branches. 

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