Saturday 18 November, 2017

TTT more than 'cosmetic name change', Cuffie says

The winding up of Caribbean New Media Group surpasses re-branding and restructuring.

That’s according to Minister of Public Administration and Communications Maxie Cuffie who in a statement responded to “inaccurate assertions” made in a letter to the Editor in a daily newspaper.

Cuffie, who last Friday said the reviving of Trinidad and Tobago Television (TTT) would create more jobs and serve as an outlet for local content maintained that the new TTT is not just a “cosmetic name change”.

A new board is expected to be appointed by the Ministry of Finance this week to begin the winding up process, which Cuffie said will be given a new mandate to create a company with a bias towards the production and procurement of local content.

Cuffie also reminded the public that CNMG was established to be "a new broadcasting company on a commercially viable basis."

“Put simply,” he said, “the mandate of the company, as was the mandate of the old TTT, was to operate like and compete against, private media houses with profit as the bottom line.”

Acknowledging that this rebranding and restructuring exercise will come at a cost to Government, Cuffie said it is a public good for which people expect to pay a price, as borne out of 2015 consultations on Government Information Services Limited (GISL) and CNMG.

The new TTT would be mandated to have universal appeal, portray the diversity of cultures representative of Trinidad and Tobago, promote national identity, provide a platform for local content and provide studio and editing services.

TTT will also be required to provide public and government information and news.

Addressing concerns of how TTT would be funded, Cuffie said the subvention for the new entity will not be increased but that the company, would be funded by government, donors and commercial revenues to ensure it is not a drain on the treasury.