Pacific Media Watch

28 May 2014

KIRIBATI: Radio journalist suspended for 'defiance' by airing opposition story

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TARAWA (Radio NZ International / Kiribati Independent / Pacific Media Watch ): Radio Kiribati has suspended a reporter for disobeying management and airing a story from an Opposition MP Tebuai Uaai.

Ueretan Bauro had defied instructions from management not to carry a statement by the MP who responded to government allegations he had failed to return public funds given to him in 2002 when he travelled abroad.

The original allegation was carried by the Te Uekera newspaper which only carried the government side.

The reporter carried the MPs reply, assuming it was in response to the paper article.

The Kiribati Independent says the officer in charge of Radio Kiribati, Babera Mwemwenikarawa, decided that Ueretan Bauro should be suspended for 20 days for not obeying instruction from management.

He says that as the reporter is an employee, he has signed his contract to obey instruction.

The Opposition says it believes that the suspension is politically motivated, and follows a directive from the President.

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