Tony Vieira's Comments
18 October 2017

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Sattaur NCN TV
(Aired 2 December 2004)

       This concerns a letter to the Stabroek News published on the 24th November 2004 from one Imtiaz Bacchus in which he claims that NCN TV [what used to be GTV] is showing something completely different in Berbice than what he sees being advertised for NCN 11 in Georgetown daily in the newspapers.

    This man is complaining, with justification, that the newspaper he buys daily tells him one thing is going to be showed on NCN TV the state owned channel and something else completely different happens, I have openly said over and over again, that saying one thing and doing something completely different is common practice in this country today, it is called deception and it is called eye pass.

    This in itself is outrageous enough i.e. to tell Mr. Bacchus in the newspaper that he will see one thing on a certain date and time on NCN TV channel 11 in Georgetown, Channel 25 in the Essequibo and Channel 15 in Berbice but something completely different comes up on that same channel NCN TV 15 that this particular Mr. Bacchus is looking at in Berbice.

     So this goodly gentleman is perfectly within his rights to complain in his letter to the Stabroek News.

  All of this is fine to this point, my only question was why would Mr. Bacchus want to look at the Lies and nonsense perpetrated on the Guyanese people on NCN TV Daily?

   But then the Stabroek in an invited comment from NCN TV published a huge load of diatribe written by the CEO of NCN one Sattaur which attempts to explain the nonsense NCN is doing in Brebice.

   So let's examine Sattaur's letter, in it he tells us that the guide he publishes daily is merely to inform the people in Berbice, Essequibo, Georgetown etc. of the frequency his TV station is transmitting on in their area, and is not necessarily a guide to what programmes they will see in those areas. This raises two questions are Guyanese so dense that we have to publish the frequency they will receive NCN TV on, in their area, daily?              

     Sattaur then states in his letter that he has told us so before, well Mr. Sattaur we do not remember or care what you said long ago, we care about what is happening now, we also don't dwell on your every word as you may want to believe, it is all garbage anyway, but ladies and gentlemen is this anyway to serve the public interest, convenience and necessity? Does Sattaur even understand that this is the stated function of all broadcasters, and that his station which is state owned has an obligation to serve all of the people in this country regardless of race and that it is not a propaganda machine for the government in power, any government in power. 

    But the idiocy does not end there, after telling Bacchus that NCN TV publishes a daily guide solely to tell the Public what channel they can be seen on in the various regions and not specifically as a guide, he then tells him that NCN TV had applied for and was granted a license to establish a national transmission grid long ago. Well this is the first time I am hearing about this one, if here was such a license then I should have been given the first one, since I became the first network in Guyana long before GTV who have wasted over 1 billion dollars trying to follow VCT into Berbice even thought of it.

    Ladies and gentlemen licenses are given by the National Frequency Management Unit [the NFMU] for a particular area after the licensee applies for and is granted a frequency for that area, the NFMU then charges a fee based on the height of the tower and the power of the transmission that will be installed. On an area by area basis.

      There is no provision for any national license as Sattaur claims, i.e. one fee for all stations in a network, if there is then the PPP has been guilty of gross deception and fraudulent activity against Sharma and myself, which is tantamount to misdemeanor in public office by members of the NFMU.

    Sattaur tells us that we must check back issues of the papers to verify this I don't know about you but if anyone asks me to check back issues of newspapers to verify anything I will tell them to go to hell, and so should you Mr. Bacchus, this man is working for us he has to account to the public in this country about his actions, he does not seem to understand that you are his boss, and that he is accountable to you but since there will be racial voting in 2006 Mr. Bacchus, they will never feel accountable to you, you have to change that by joining your voice with mine now. These are the people we are bringing here to run important entities like our state media, and the eye pass is everywhere with increasing and alarming frequency; for the example the Permanent secretary of the Ministry of Education one Phulander Kandhi, telling the public in the newspapers of the 28th November 2004 that he does not have to assign a reason why the bids were suspended for 4 million US to print text books, let me educate you Kandhi you are wrong! You are accountable to the people of this country and you should be forced to answer the question and tell us what corruption your Ministry has been up to this time.

      Now Sattaur in his letter to the Stabroek news makes this foolish statement and I quote him "we have designed some programmes, like the six O'clock News Magazine, as national programmes and these are aired live at all of our locations, satellite stations are authorized to break away from the national grid to air community specific programmes at intervals during the broadcast day.

     Now ladies and gentlemen what sort of stupidity is this? He tells us that he has a national broadcast license but he does not operate a national network of stations, in fact, he is actually operating satellite stations at various locations which can break away from the national GRID and play whatever they want during the day, my question therefore is who holds the licenses for those satellite stations which only plays the news and some other propaganda nonsense for the public from NCN, and anything else they decide during the rest of the day?

   Finally knowing that he has been given preference in terms of expansion whilst at the same time Freedom House has mutilated my and Sharma's freedom of speech rights in denying our expanding to other locations, Sattaur makes this nonsensical statement and I quote him "we are not expanding our services but simply fixing what we have always had" this is a lie Sattaur NCN TV has built a new tower at New Amsterdam within the past 4 months, to do this they would have had to get permission from the NFMU since it is a new transmission, on a new tower, at a new location. This is clear cut expansion and since Sharma an I have been denied expansion since 2001, it is unconstitutional and illegal for the NFMU to deny us whilst at the same time accommodating its own state owned station. It is called discrimination.