Posted November 12, 2018 12:33:07 Federal Communications Commission chairman Scott Morrison has said he was “not going to comment” on the existence of a new legal authority under the Telecommunications Act that would allow the ABC to refuse to air any of its programming, including political and community programming.
“I’m not going to speculate on the contents of those documents that are being circulated in the media,” Mr Morrison told Sky News on Friday.
He said it would not be appropriate for him to comment on the matter.
The ABC’s current head of programming Andrew Coates is currently seeking advice from the Federal Government’s legal team on whether it could legally block the network from airing its political programming.
Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said the ABC’s political programming should not be subject to a political interference by the ABC.
Mr Shorten has previously expressed concerns about the role of the ABC in Australia’s national security and warned that the ABC should not allow the government to interfere with the media.
The ABC has faced pressure to cut political and critical coverage since the publication of the Government’s national anti-terrorism strategy.
The network was criticised for its lack of coverage of the Senate’s inquiry into the killing of Sydney terrorist Adam Goodes, as well as for not covering a report into the death of Mr Goodes’s girlfriend, who had been given access to the royal commission into the murder of Adam Goode.
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