The Chisinau Court recently rejected the appeal of NTV Moldova against the decision of the Broadcasting Council (BC) to fine the TV station 25,000 MDL for failing to ensure the correct information of the public. The sanction was applied in connection with a news story from June 2022, which concerned the summoning of the wife of the ex-president Igor Dodon in order to be indicted.
The decision challenged by NTV Moldova was issued at the BC meeting of July 8, 2022, when it examined the complaint coming from WatchDog.md. The petitioning organization reported that the TV station showed a lack of impartiality and balance when it broadcast, on June 13, 2022, a news story about the fact that Galina Dodon was summoned to the prosecutor’s office.
The BC monitoring report attested deviations from the obligation to ensure correct information to the public. It revealed that NTV Moldova included in its news story Igor Dodon’s statements, which were taken from a social network and referred to the indictment of Galina Dodon. The ex-president mentioned that “the desire to take revenge on the political opponent pushes” President Maia Sandu to attack his wife, children, mother, close relatives. The BC found that the president’s position on the statement concerning her was not presented, which is a violation of the obligation to present the main opposing points of view at a time when the issue is under public debate.
The decision to sanction Exclusiv Media, the founding company of NTV Moldova, with a fine of 25,000 MDL was made with the vote of five members of the BC out of the six present.
NTV Moldova’s appeal against the sanction imposed by the BC was rejected by judge Grigorii Cazacu of the Chisinau Court, Rascani office, on October 26. NTV Moldova can challenge the judgment at the Chisinau Court of Appeal.