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News Update: ‘Mahibere Kidusan’ disputes decision by Media Authority to temporarily suspend its TV channel

Addis Ababa Mahibere Kidusan, a religious association affiliated with the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC), responded to a decision by Ethiopian Media Authority (EMA) to temporarily suspend its TV channel, “Mahibere Kidusan TV”, saying it disagreed with the decision and appealed for the suspension to be lifted.

The Media Authority issued a letter on Sunday, 21 May announcing the temporary ban imposed on Mahibere Kidusan TV on grounds that the station aired content that may provoke conflict among religious followers and incite the Holy Synod’s meeting which was concluded yesterday.

In its response Mahibere Kidusan expressed its belief that contrary to the Authority’s assertions for suspending the TV Channel, the content aired during the program in question would not incite conflict among the members of the church, as it entertains a statement that was issued by a committee established by the EOTC’s permanent Synod and garnered support from various recognized associations within the Church.

Furthermore, the association provided detailed justifications to demonstrate that the content of the suspended program was in accordance with the media decree and, therefore, did not breach any regulations.

Mahibere Kidusan also lamented the decision for its the lack of due process in accordance with Ethiopia’s media law, such as prior notification regarding complaints or an opportunity to the TV channel to provide an explanation before the decision was hastily taken. 

The association called for transparency and due process, and urged the Media Authority to adhere to the established administrative measures outlined in the media law; it has therefore appealed for the temporary suspension to be lifted. AS

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