KUALA LUMPUR, 22 April 2009: Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) will change the time slot for Tamil news on Nasional@1 to 7.30pm from 8pm starting 1 May.
Information, Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim said RTM would also try to change the time slots for Mandarin and English news to be as close to prime time (8pm), for instance, at 8.30pm.
He hoped the change would satisfy the Indian and Chinese communities. “I have met with my colleagues from the MCA and MIC on the matter,” said Rais after the official handing-over of duty to him by former Unity, Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal, here, today.
On 17 April, RTM made changes to the news time slots on Nasional@1, including for Bahasa Malaysia news, back to 8pm since after it was moved to 9pm previously.
Mandarin news was moved to the 6.30pm-7pm slot, Tamil news to 6pm-6.30pm and English news to the 8pm-8.30pm slot over TV2.
Some quarters, including Barisan Nasional component parties, were however unhappy with the changes and urged RTM to review the rescheduling of the news segment as most Indian Malaysians are at still at work or on their way home during the Tamil news broadcast.
Rais said he would also meet with other groups on 24 April to hear their views on RTM’s broadcast programmes.
“Our suggestion is for RTM’s second channel (TV2) to be enjoyed and respected while TV1 will remain the national channel which gives priority to Bahasa Malaysia as the national language.
Asked whether the live telecast of parliamentary sittings would continue with him heading the ministry, Rais said it would go on but the air time would be reviewed.
He said he would also be meeting with private radio and television station operators to explain the legal requirements under the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 and their role in promoting the 1Malaysia concept. — Bernama