Title -- 4689 TONGA: Media Council of Tonga replies
Date -- 2 April 2005
Byline -- None
Origin -- Pacific Media Watch
Source -- PMW 1/4/05
Copyright - PMW
Status -- Unabridged
Post a comment on PMW's Right of Reply: www.voy.com/166636/
MEDIA COUNCIL OF TONGA REPLIES
4687 TONGA: Regional journalist blasts PINA over ban response:
Pacific Media Watch,
I want to express my disappointment with what you have just reported about the Media Council Incorporated, Tonga. It makes you and your organisation sound so big-headed and arrogant, and I want you to correct your report.
For a start it is not the "Tongan Media Council", it is the "Media Council Inc., Tonga". It took a lot of thought and hard-work to establish the Council to find solutions to some of the legal problems that the Tongan media have been through during the past years, and it is very annoying when you belittle our effort with your sly comment:
"An organisation called the Tongan Media Council, which is dominated by Tongan government officials, on Friday admitted it had advised PINA that Field had not applied to enter Tonga."
The second correction that you must make is that the Council is not dominated by Tongan government officials. There is not one government official in the Council. The Media Council was set up entirely by the local media industry in November 2003. The executives of the Council were elected from representatives of member organisations.
The executives of the Media Council are -
Chairman - Pesi Fonua (Vava'u Press Ltd.)
Deputy Chairman - Siaosi Lavaka (Tonga Broadcasting Commission)
Secretary - Katalina Tohi (Tonga Broadcasting Commission)
Deputy Secretary - Mateni Tapueluelu (Taimi 'o Tonga).
Treasurer - Filokalafi 'Akau'ola (Talaki)
Deputy Treasurer - Cassandra Vaea (Tonfon TV)
Training co-ordinator - Taina Kami (Tongan Woman Magazine)
The Council is the host for the 2005 PINA Convention and the correspondence between the Council and PINA over the proposed boycott of the convention was handled by our secretary, Katalina Tohi who is also one of the executives of PINA. There are some clarifications needed to be made on what has been said.
With regards to your report - "Right now the Media Council is preparing papers to be submitted to the Prime Minister's Office on your behalf and for the hundreds of journalists who need visas to be in Tonga for the PINA 2005."
It can be misinterpreted to mean that all journalists visiting Tonga must get a visa before they arrive here. This is definitely not the case. There is a planned meeting between the Council, PINA executives and our Prime Minister, and we want to raise the case of Mike Field then, and to mention to the PM, who is also the Minister for Immigration, that hundred of journalists will be visiting Tonga for the convention, and if there are ways to expedite the processing of their visas on arrival. Personally, I don't even know why Mike applied, overseas journalists just come and go as they please. Anyway, he seems to thrive on his banned journalist image, but we are hopeful that we can get him here because we think he is harmless. He likes writing about Tonga and he should be here, to get his facts updated and get to know his subject better.
I look forward to seeing you in Tonga in October.
Media Council Inc.,
Vava'u Press Ltd.
Taumoepeau Bldg., Hala Fatafehi, Nuku'alofa.
P.O. Box 958, Nuku'alofa, Tonga, South Pacific.
Telephone: +(676) 25779
Facsimile: +(676) 24749
PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH is an independent, non-profit, non-government organisation comprising journalists, lawyers, editors and other media workers, dedicated to examining issues of ethics, accountability, censorship, media freedom and media ownership in the Pacific region. Launched in October 1996, it has links with the Journalism Program at the University of the South Pacific, Bushfire Media based in Sydney, Journalism Studies at the University of PNG (UPNG), the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism (ACIJ), Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand, and Community Communications Online (c2o).
© 1996-2005 Copyright - All rights reserved. Items are provided solely for review purposes as a non-profit educational service. Copyright remains the property of the original producers as indicated. Recipients should seek permission from the copyright owner for any publishing. Copyright owners not wishing their materials to be posted by PMW please contact us. The views expressed in material listed by PMW are not necessarily the views of PMW or its members. Recipients should rely on their own inquiries before making decisions based on material listed in PMW. Please copy appeals to PMW and acknowledge source.
Saturday, 2 April 2005
For further information, inquiries about joining the Pacific Media Watch listserve, articles for publication, and giving feedback contact Pacific Media Watch at:
E-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org Fax: (+649) 3787542 or (+612) 9660 1804
Mail: PO Box 9, Annandale, NSW 2038, Australia
or PO Box 78028, Grey Lynn, Auckland 1002, New Zealand
Return to Pacific Media Watch