21 Feb 2012

FBC in Fiji calls on NZ govt to lift ban on TVNZ television programmes

9:22 am on 21 February 2012

The New Zealand government is being urged to lift a ban on TVNZ providing its free Pacific service to Fiji's first state television service.

Fiji Broadcasting Corporation TV was launched by Fiji's interim prime minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama three months ago.

The FBC says it's had two requests to show TVNZ's free Pacific service turned down on instructions from New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The corporation's chief executive, Riyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says it's illogical to extend official sanctions against the interim government to television programmes.

"Personally I think it's childish, they are a government, they can do whatever they like I just don't think it's going to make any difference to the New Zealand government to use the service or not. The only difference it will make is the fact the public of Fiji will be able to see some great programmes."

Riyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

The New Zealand ministry of foreign affairs says the television ban is part of government sanctions imposed against the military regime in 2006.