Polish public TV promotes
, the pan-European party founded by controversial Irish millionaire , appears to be wiping its election rivals from public TV stations, new air-time results show. Poland reports.
Despite Libertas scoring poorly in public opinion surveys ahead of the EU elections, the party seems to be gaining ground on television shows and news programmes.
According to comparative figures compiled by Poland's TV programming board and cited last week by the Gazeta Wyborcza newspaper, the new pan-European party came in third position for political air time.
While the two biggest parties, PiS (Law and Justice) and PO (Civic Platform) were shown eight and nine times respectively on public channel TVP1 between 4-10 May, Libertas was reported about seven times.
On TVP2, Libertas had the most broadcasting time with six minutes 55 seconds, 25 seconds more air time than the ruling PO and two minutes and five seconds more than the largest opposition party, PiS.
These figures appear to support accusations by the two leading Polish newspapers, Gazeta Wyborcza and Dziennik, that the chair of Polish public television service TVP, Piotr Farfał - who has links with the League of Polish Families (Liga Polskich Rodzin, LPR) - wants to promote Libertas.
According to Gazeta, TVP editor-in-chief Jan Piński is doing his best to ensure balanced coverage and give viewers the opprtunity to enjoy accurate reporting on all the politicians running for election.
In response to Dziennik and Gazeta Wyborcza's accusations, Piński made the following statement: "Suggestions by competitors that TVP is giving visibility only to the two most important political parties is an inadmissible form of pressure which has no place in the democratic system". Farfał stressed, meanwhile, that TVP intended to present all ten registered parties during the electoral campaign.
In protest against discriminating programmes in public television, centre-left party 'CentroLewica: Porozumienie dla Przyszłości' (Pact for the Future) sent an official letter to Farfał.
Arkadiusz Kasznia, head of CentroLewica's election campaign, complained about the lack of equal access to air time on public broadcast channels. Citing an election show as an example, he underlined that only representatives of the leading parties and Libertas were invited to speak. Kasznia stressed that unlike CentroLewica, Libertas had no representatives in the Polish parliament, but had become an "important player in the television shows".
Piotr Farfał was named TVP chairman at the end of the last year on the recommendation of Samoobrona and LPR. Farfał replaced Andrzej Urbański, who was criticised for favoring PiS representatives.
- EurActiv.pl: Publiczna telewizja promuje Libertas
- Gazeta Wyborcza: Libertas u Farfała
- Dziennik: Telewizja Farfała telewizją Libertas
- Dziennik: Szef Libertas: Z Rydzykiem się nie spotkam
- State of the Union (Irish Times): Libertas scores own goal in Poland
- Libertas? Nein Danke! Say NO to Europe's New Right Wing: Irish Libertas wants to dispose of Poles while tens of thousands of Irish living and working in other EU countries would have to return home
- Dominika Pszczółkowska (Gazeta Wyborcza): Libertas against Polish workers in Ireland
- Libertas? Nein Danke! Say NO to Europe's New Right Wing: Poland turns on Libertas over anti Polish attitude of Irish candidates