Monday, November 9, 2009

Reporter fights committee chairman for a piece of the budget

One of my colleagues, a senior reporter at LETA, the Latvian news agency, described a bizarre incident in which she was at the Latvian parliament, the Saeima, covering the government budget process as pertains to cultural institutions, specifically state-supported theaters and the National Opera.
A parliamentary committee spokesman made a presentation of this part of the budget, but refused to give it to reporters. My colleague obtained a copy from a Saeima deputy, who was entitled to have it and who proceeded, together with the reporter, to make a copy for her. The committee chairman then proceeded to try to wrest the document away from both of them, declaring that he would never let the press have it.
My colleague and the parliametarian then proceeded to go to another copying machine and got her copy. It was a bizarre and disgraceful incident and an affront to the media and the public's right to know, especially when it comes to how their tax money is to be spent.

3 comments:

TRex said...

There's definitely a lot of contempt for the press among politicians and their cronies, witness Flick and his response to questions of transparency in the "Live Riga" endeavor http://balticreports.com/?p=4428

Anders said...

Hej Juris!
Hur kan jag maila dig? Hittar ingen adress? Maila annars mig.
Anders (journalist i Sverige)

Juris Kaža said...

Hej Anders,
Min mail aer juriskaza(AT)gmail.com. Ser inte din mail :(.