Formula TV expresses grave concern over the continuous decision of the ruling Georgian Dream (GD) party to maintain its boycott to our programmes and talkshows as well as coordinated attempts to disrupt our social media operations that have already undermined our ability to meet the highest media standards to the Georgian public. Boycotting critical TV stations has unfortunately become a hallmark of GD party. Although the ruling party has recently partially changed this approach, the discriminatory approach towards Formula TV has been kept in place. The decision is not backed by any claim of journalistic standards breach or any other arguments and is a matter of significant concern.
During his annual speech in Parliament, Prime Minister Gharibashvili personally attacked the founder of Formula TV. A coordinated attack was carried out on the TV’s official Facebook page. As a result, the work of our Facebook page, which recently became the leader of social media by engagement, continues with severe interruptions.
Our TV Channel adheres to the highest media standards, differentiates facts from opinions, and stands up for journalistic ethics, since public trust in this profession is in itself of paramount importance for us. Since its establishment, Formula TV is devoted to the values and principles corresponding to our Euro-Atlantic aspirations, which includes pluralism, provision of trusted information to the public, caring for human rights, and combining the function of watchdog over the state.
Today we are at the stage when our efforts are not enough to achieve a high level of inclusion. The discriminatory approach of the authorities complicates our work and creates artificial barriers to carry out our duties.
We are grateful to our international partners and the diplomatic corps in Tbilisi for numerous demonstrations of support at tough times for Formula TV, which today is as important as ever.
It is our most sincere hope that Georgia’s friends and partners will consider a possibility to emphasize the importance of inclusive and constructive debates and media pluralism in the context of the developing events.
Interaction with the critical media is an obligation for any government, rather than its goodwill. Blanket boycott of critical media flatly contrasts with the ideals to which our country claims it aspires. It is our most sincere hope that this unfortunate and harmful practice will end.