Vienna, 10 October 2016 - The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) was surprised to learn about the cancellation of an investigative TV show in Albania, after only three episodes on air.
The investigative TV show Publicus ended on Sunday, 9 October after airing only three episodes on Vision Plus TV. The show had previously focused on investigative stories exposing political and governmental issues in Albania, among which was the issue of monitoring waste imports into the country.
The cancellation of Publicus occurred just before another episode was due, which allegedly dealt with the investigation against a high level politician. The opposition Democratic Party claims Publicus was silenced under political pressure. As journalist Artan Rama said to BIRN " we were notified that the show wasn't going to air, with no explanation given"
“An abrupt cancellation of an investigative show is disturbing” SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic said. “The editors have of course the right to decide about program changes, but the public should be informed what the reasons behind the shutdown of Publicus are" Vujovic added. According to information before SEEMO, only two months ago, in August, the editor-in-chief of A1 News TV, Alida Tota, was dismissed, after trying to air a report.
SEEMO is a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in South, East and Central Europe and its press freedom work is supported by the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) project, as part of a grant by the European Commission.