Letter to BP: Journalists Angered as FNM Gags Media at Convention

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fnm-nite-2November 5th 2009
Dear Editor,

Having covered many conventions in recent years it is with a heavy heart that I write this note to your attention.  I ask that you not use me personally as a source but that you do accept what I am about to share with you as factual information that needs to be shared with the Bahamian public regarding what I regard as the singular greatest insult freedom of the press in recent Bahamian history.

The FNM assigned a director as they termed it “Media Rep” to every television station that covered its convention on opening night.  This director had the responsibility of directing the Producers and Directors of each television production.  We were told which shots to take of the crowd, when and when not to interrupt both speakers and entertainment segments with commentary as well as when to insert prepared political messages touting the tried and tested leadership of the Prime Minister.

The prepared commentary segments for the first night of coverage were never aired because the Free National Movement decided that it would not permit journalists the freedom to produce their independent productions without being told exactly what to do and when by the party.

You will note if you followed the coverage that after a while there was no commentary whatsoever on any of the three television stations carrying the convention.  This was because all three stations talent and guests had abandoned their posts because they were not permitted time to express their views.fnm-2

By the end of the evening Mr. Aaron “Kiki” Knowles came around to each station assuring us that this would not be the case come tomorrow and that he had no idea who directed the “Directors” from the party to attempt to take control of the productions on behalf of the FNM.  He said that things would be different tomorrow, however the damage is already done and it is very likely that wind of these happenings will be reported in the daily news tomorrow or sometime later this week.

My question to you Sir is this, Why did the FNM feel that they ought to police the media in this way?  What is it that they sought to convey?  What image were they so bent on creating that they could not trust the same media in fact what is the most diverse and balanced grouping of media in the history of broadcast journalism (NOT JUST ZNS ANYMORE) to do the job we have been called to do so many times before? This was a very very sad night in our country and I ask you to look into it and where required, expose it, it is simply wrong and certainly not the direction any government or party should take in the modern political landscape of our country.

Signed,

Journalist Concerned about FNM Democracy

  • Tink we fool

    yeah it takes the piss out of us as john public shabby reporting

  • Awakened

    I heard Chrissy Luv’s show this morning and I couldn’t believe the one sidedness, Micheal Pintard was voicing his opinion on Bradley Roberts and that his right, but Chrissy being a journalist should have stayed neutral but no, she jumped into the pool and started running on with her what she thinks are smart comments, I hate listening to ZNS station no matter what party is in government, it’s always slanted one side or the other, it’s ridiculous.

  • bahngr

    This is no more than what should be expected of the FNM especially in these circumstances. The veracity of this claim is evident by the presence of Mr. Knowles, who was undoubtedly the source of these directions. His denial ensures that. You can be sure that Mr. Ingraham would not trust such an enterprise to anyone but Mr. Knowles, who once he is paid, would do anything unimaginable.

  • Trinity

    I wonder what your schizoid PM is going to say tonight. This convention deader than Lazarus!!! More of that “Tested Leadership” and I will have to hurl…….

  • KEVIN MCKENZIE :I do not want to do a PICEWELL FORBES,so BahamasPress i want you to INVESTIGATE if there is any truth to the RUMOURS about BTC BEING SOLD.I was at BTC when i over heard some of their employees speaking about the sale of btc and the IMPENDING DOWNSIZING SCHEDULE TO TAKE PLACE IN JANUARY,2010.I must add that these employees were very afraid.
    [Reply]

    DO YOU THINK THE PM WILL ANNOUNCE THAT TONIGHT IN HIS ADDRESS TO THE NATION?

  • Forrester J Carroll J.P

    MY ONLY COMMENT IS; I TOLD YOU’LL THEY WERE DICTATORS.

  • Animal Farm,for sure and the press is silenced.fortunately it is not business as usual as the Internet is here.But if there is a buyer for BTC we need to know as that entity will be in a position to stifle dissent.

  • Trinity

    @Awakened
    Why wouldn’t they be? Everyone knows what happened after the last election….victimization in its purest form. The media in this country is tainted and biased to the point of disgrace. If there weren’t intelligent, free-thinking Bahamians out there, we’d be in an even worse rut. How can anyone believe a crew who based their campaign on trust and then turn around and have led a government with little to no transparency and also spread propaganda all the time. The only good thing is, many Bahamians have seen for themselves where the commitment lies in this government. The others are simply in denial.

  • Awakened

    WOW!!, I was wondering why after the first night of the FNM convention, ZNS never aired the comments of the PLP’s views on their radio broadcast the next morning, but on the PLP’s convention the FNM got their views across on the PLP’s performance everyday, not until this morning have they aired the PLP’s views, where was Controversy TV in all of this, the media in this country is on lock, I guess there are characters who are afraid of losing their positions.

  • I do not want to do a PICEWELL FORBES,so BahamasPress i want you to INVESTIGATE if there is any truth to the RUMOURS about BTC BEING SOLD.I was at BTC when i over heard some of their employees speaking about the sale of btc and the IMPENDING DOWNSIZING SCHEDULE TO TAKE PLACE IN JANUARY,2010.I must add that these employees were very afraid.

  • @mashup
    lolo lolo I really have you sweating so since you are so smart explain to other bloggers why you gey hysterical so easily.Am staying away from that hole where you sleep as I might get fleas.Journalists arer deathly afraid of HAI and the majority have the number 666 imprinted on their chests.You better run back to HAI and tell him about me as I refuse to let up on trash.Reclaim your manhood and try and report professionally or I will let everyone know who you are.OOOHHH shooots I have already done that.You talk too much and bore me.Stop using journalistic language as it exposes you further.Last suggestion change your name to “member of the wuthless press”.lolo am goood.

  • mashup

    @rj

    oh my, i’m sorry i asked you to hurt your little brain there buddy. you are now officially even stupider than altec (psst, that’s pretty stupid).

    it’s such a wonder you can type with your head so far up your own backside.

  • Charles

    Touche mashup

  • mashup :@russell johnson
    even though I know you’re a total dummy. why don’t you prove me right and tell me who I am sherlock, just like you told bahamasyouth.
    oh i’m sorry, that’s right, you were wrong about him weren’t you?
    [Reply]

    You are the twin of bahamasyouth lolo.Never knew two persons could be identical to the fault dumber,and delusional.You get mad so easy imagine if I called your mothers name then she would have to buy new furnitures as you would destroy her house.Calm down you clown as shoukld know by now that I take no prisoners.Now go and cry in your office and dont mention this conversation on air no matter how tempted you might be to do so lolo.Gotcha, dummy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • mashup

    @russell johnson

    even though I know you’re a total dummy. why don’t you prove me right and tell me who I am sherlock, just like you told bahamasyouth.

    oh i’m sorry, that’s right, you were wrong about him weren’t you?

  • @mashup
    “I listen to their show every Tuesday”.Listen more often as even though McCartney gets in shots at the Govt.he is apologetic.I guess he cant believe he has been duped into supporting such a gang of miscreants.Errin even though a PLP supporter in the past appeasrs to be careful of what he says because he knows who pays his paycheck,I have no problem with that.Unfortunately in this country some reporters have had to sell their souls in order to make a living.And stop bringing in a different reporter each time you respond as it arouses my suspicion and I dont need to know your identity.

  • mashup

    @rj

    i listen to their show every Tuesday. Erin Ferguson is a PLP so I don’t include him, but you clearly don’t listen to that show, McCartney blasts the government all the time.

  • @mashup
    Please listen to McCartney again as surely you have missed his subtlety on praising the FNM for doing nothing and attacking the PLP who are not the Govt.I did not mention Brent Dean as am still studying him but he appears to be one who wants to be a true journalist.Check it out then get back to me.Funny as to how you brought up Deans name even though I did not attack him hmmppphhh.

  • mashup

    @russell

    now I know you’re lost McCartney and Dean over there at star are the only ones that challenge any of these bozos with any tough questions.

  • We have a despot in our midst and must stay focused and prevent any further erosion of our democracy.I listened to some of the announcers especially Vaughn McCartney and he is trying to sell the Bahamain people a dead and rotting cow.This Govt is bankrupt of ideas and now the Bahamian public are seeing what many of us knew ,this Govt.just aint gat it.The Govt. is not doing anything and now they are reaping the whirlwind.Poor Carl got fired and must now stand at the back of the line plus remove himself from the front bench of the Govt side in Parliament.Obeah dont work on me.

  • Tink we fool

    Jepeto wont let the puppets play without the strings haha

  • Trinity

    What difference does this make? They have had the media gagged for years haven’t they?…pushing their own agendas and slamming the PLP at every turn. It is my hope that Bahamians realise the true nature of this government of “trust” and “tested leadership”.

  • Green Tea

    I am not surprised of what the journalist stated, in fact, I moved from station to station and felt most comfortable watching Love 97 & Wendall Jones. Say what you like about Mr. Jones, I think he is the best we have in the Bahamas and he is not afraid to question both the FNM and PLP the same way.

    Kudos to Jones Bahamas.

    Also, Mr. Marshall (an independent contributor) from TV 12 handled himself well and showed all viewers of that station a true professional at work. I am certain Daron Cash realized last evening that even though he supports a particular party to appear objective and sensible especially when it relates to the state of Freeport.

  • Examiner

    I cry shame on Mugabe them.