Polish media law changes scuppered

The Polish parliament (Sejm) has upheld a presidential veto on controversial proposed amendments to the country’s media law.

Had it been overturned, the National Broadcasting Council (KRRiT) would have probably been dissolved and the heads of both the public broadcaster TVP and its radio counterpart dismissed.

The amendments were put forward by the ruling Civic Forum (PO) party soon after it took power in November 2007 but have been strongly opposed by the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) and other parties.

Critics argued they would lead to the demise of public broadcasting in Poland – the privatisation of one of TVP’s main channels has been mooted, though denied by the PO.

The PO said that the amendments were needed to depoliticise public broadcasting in Poland.

Had they come into effect, they would have transferred many of the powers currently held by the KRRiT to the Office of Electronic Communication (UKE).