Voice TV, a pro-Thaksin digital broadcaster known for its critical coverage of the military, went off the air at midnight as ordered by the broadcast regulator.
“Temporarily off air as ordered by NBTC,” is a message spread across the screen of the channel instead of its normal programs.
The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) yesterday faulted the broadcaster for presenting biased information in provocative manner that caused confusions despite repeated warnings from the regulator.
Lt-Gen Phirapong Manakit, an NBTC board member, cited several instances to back up the charge. He mentioned specifically Voice TV’s two flagship programs, “Wake Up News” and “Tonight Thailand” which often took potshots at the military.
He said NBTC had received continuous complaints against the broadcaster. While critical of the military since the coup, Voice TV has also been criticized for continuously echoing the agenda of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra and his supporters.
Phirapong warned that the NBTC board might revoke the broadcaster’s operating licence if it continues to defy demands to improve its broadcasts.
Voice TV chief executive officer Mekin Petplai, however, defended the station as having been performing its journalistic duty professionally and in a balanced manner. Accusing the regulator of double-standards and of abusing its authority against Voice TV, he said he would take the case to the Administrative Court to seek a reprieve against the blackout order.