The Association of Journalists of Macedonia (AJM), the Independent Trade Union of Journalists and Media Workers (SSNM), the Macedonian Media Institute (MIM), and the Council of Media Ethics (CMEM) sent letter with a reaction to the President of the Republic of North Macedonia, to the President and the representatives of the Government of N. Macedonia, the President of the Assembly of N. Macedonia and the coordinators of the political parties.
In the letter, the AJM, SSNM, MIM and CMEM react the announcements for lifting the ban on public advertising funds in private media by amending Article 102 of the Law on Audio and Audiovisual Media Services (LAAME).
Guilds of journalists and media organizations point out that this practice of buying media space by public institutions in the media for campaigns can undermine media independence and jeopardize the right to freedom of expression. In addition, this could seriously disrupt the media market which is already affected by public funds provided for in the Election Law through the Paid Political Program (PPP). Apart from the damage to the independence of the media and thus the damage to the right to information of the citizens, this practice of returning the paid government campaigns can manipulate the public interest through campaigns that would be promoted as public, and basically have political party goals for promotion of certain party entities and their policies in the private media.
The letter in full is attached at the link.