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Minister Naughten must give an appropriate and detailed response to independent media report - Lynn Boylan MEP

27 October, 2016 - by Senator Lynn Boylan

Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan has called on the Minister for Communications, Denis Naughten, to provide an appropriate and detailed response to the independent report, which she commissioned, on the concentration of media ownership in Ireland.

The report, published this week, calls for the establishment of a commission of inquiry into the matter.

She said;

"Whatever about the opinion of Denis O'Brien, it is clear that Minister for Communications cannot continue to dismiss the substance and import of this report. Its analysis, findings and recommendations are extremely important and should be given the serious treatment warranted by their weight.

"This is not only about the future of the media in this state but the manner in which the Minister now responds has implications for the development of good public policy in this area. We cannot have Ministers rubbishing and criticising such contributions without having taken the time to read and study them. I think we can all agree that this is not an approach to discussions around public policy that should be allowed to stand, especially from those in Ministerial office.

"It is worth remembering that this is the same Minister who is contemplating subsidising the print media with taxpayers' money and yet he casually dismisses a groundbreaking report that flags up very serious issues in the landscape of that sector. That is incredibly reckless.

"Any objective and reasonable reading of this report reveals its obvious value in charting a pathway to a media market in Ireland that is open, diverse and pluralistic.

"This is surely an honourable aim around which we can find common ground. Therefore, Minister Naughten should now give an appropriate and detailed response to the matters addressed in the report and the call for the establishment of a commission of inquiry."

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