11 July 2024

The Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS) has pledged to be a voice of objectivity and reason to contribute to helping the country weather through the current crisis, being aggravated by the coronavirus pandemic and political conflicts.

Dr. Wilasinee Phiphitkul, the director general of Thai PBS, told a Senate session on Tuesday that the public broadcaster will also strengthen its educational contents to promote a learning and knowledge society.

The remarks were part of an annual report Thai PBS presented to the Senate for 2020.

She pointed out that the crisis Thailand is going through is posing a major challenge to the media.  She said Covid-19 has been wreaking havoc on the country and its economic impact has severely affected the society.  The ongoing political conflicts, she said, are also exacerbating the situation.

“In situation like this, the public broadcaster must be prepared to help the society deal with the challenges,” she said.

As a public broadcaster, she said, Thai PBS will put efforts to professionally reflect what the country is going through its objective and fair news coverage and programming.

“Thai PBS will use its resources and various platforms to promote public participation in debate on necessary reforms with an aim of contributing to help the country go through this difficult time,” she said.

Also speaking during the session, Jermsak Pinthong, chairman of the board of governors of Thai PBS, said the public broadcaster is being designed as a “school for people of different groups and ages in the society.”

“It aims to promote life-long learning and to encourage people from all walks of life, especially those on the fringes, to have a say,” she said.

Jermsak also compared the role played by Thai PBS to a lighthouse.  “Whenever there is crisis, people would turn to Thai PBS because of its objectivity and credibility,” he said.  However, he admitted that Thai PBS needs to attract people not only during time of crisis.

Thai PBS in July this year launched its education channel “ALTV” to provide educational contents in various fields.    Dr. Wilasinee said the channel represents Thai PBS efforts to encourage learning and knowledge-sharing among a wide spectrum of audiences.

Senator Amphol Jindawattana commended Thai PBS for its role as a public broadcaster in keeping the pubic informed and as a learning platform.

Thai PBS was founded in 2008 and is funded as the country’s first independent public broadcaster with tax revenue from tobacco and alcohol.