Karachi [Pakistan], November 25 (ANI): Pakistan's media organizations have urged the government to not use advertising to influence editorial content or to control free speech.
According to the Dawn, in response to a statement made by PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz as well as Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, media bodies such as the Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) and All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS) representing radio, television channels, and newspapers said in their statements that governments should not try to create divisions within media industry or use advertising as a tool to exercise control over news organizations.
"We ask the government to make public all media spends of the last 20 years, including the present government's spend," PBA said.
"PBA strongly condemns all forms of coercion by any government past or present that has used government advertisements as a tool to influence editorial policy. The present government also faces accusations of adopting the same strategy whereas as per its manifesto, it should ensure that taxpayers' money for advertisement in the public interest is well spent and is given on merit." it further added.
Meanwhile, APNS also expressed its profound concern over Maryam Nawaz's statement where figures of advertisements were released to media during the tenure of the previous government.
"The figures released are not only partial and selective but purposefully do not include the advertisement spending of the present government. The APNS asks the government to release the figures of advertising released to the media in the last 20 years," said the APNS statement as cited in the Dawn
On the other hand, APNS mentioned that it condemns the past and present governments which were intended to curb freedom of press and expression by using government advertising to influence editorial content. (ANI)